British joint recipient, with Odd Hassel of Norway, of the 1969 Nobel
Prize for Chemistry for research that helped establish conformational
analysis (the study of the three-dimensional geometric structure of
complex molecules) as an essential part of organic chemistry.
A faculty member of Birkbeck College, University of London, from 1950, Barton served as professor of chemistry at the University of Glasgow (1955-57) and then became professor of organic chemistry at Imperial College (1957-78). After serving as director of research (1977-85) with the National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) at the Institute of Organic Chemistry (ICSN) in Gif-sur-Yvette, France, he took a distinguished professorship at Texas A&M University in the United States.
In 1958 he discovered the Barton reaction, a process that led to an
easier means of synthesizing the hormone aldosterone. He was knighted
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