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S.M. Blinder
Regents' Proceedings 296

S. M. Blinder, professor of chemistry, retired from active faculty status on December 31, 1995.

Professor Blinder received his A.B. degree from Cornell University in 1953 and his A.M. and Ph.D. degrees from Harvard University in 1954 and 1958, respectively. Following positions at the Johns Hopkins University (1958-61), the Carnegie Institute of Technology (1961-62), and Harvard University (1962-63), he joined the faculty of the University of Michigan as professor of chemistry in 1963.

Professor Blinder has had an extraordinarily diverse career in both teaching and research. He has been an inspiring teacher for a generation of graduate and undergraduate students and has offered the largest number of different courses ever taught by a member of the chemistry faculty and probably in the College of LS&A. He has also published two texts on such different subjects as classical thermodynamics and quantum dynamics, both of which have received great acclaim as models of incisive scholarship and precision and have been much imitated by other authors.

Professor Blinder's research has centered on various forms of perturbation methods in physics and chemistry. He has had particular success in achieving closed-form solutions of the Schrodinger equation for some major problems, including that of the Fermi contact interaction in terms of what is now known as the "Blinder operator." Professor Blinder was also successful in obtaining an analytical solution for the Coulomb (hydrogen atom) propagator, which had eluded other workers for over forty years. This was the culmination of his discovery of a new spectral variation principle, which allows optimization of the energy spectrum of an approximate propagator. These general methods also led to the resolution of an old paradox concerning the canonical partition function for the hydrogen atom. Despite his formal retirement, Professor Blinder intends to remain active, particularly in the important area of nonlinear dynamics and in the search for quantum chaos.

The Regents now salute this faculty member by naming S. M. Blinder professor emeritus of chemistry.