Image of Professor Ray Freeman
Professor Ray Freeman

Professor Ray Freeman (1932 -2022)

We are greatly saddened to hear that Professor Ray Freeman (FRS), the former John Humphrey Plummer Professor of Magnetic Resonance, Fellow of this College from 1987 and Emeritus Fellow from 1999, died on May 1, 2022 aged 90 and we offer his family our deep condolences.

Prof Freeman dedicated his career to the investigation of new techniques in Nuclear Magnetic Resonance spectroscopy. He had a significant hand in many of the techniques which are used on a day-to-day basis in NMR facilities around the world, and which revolutionised NMR as an analytical technique.

Ray was Plummer Professor in the Department for Chemistry from1987 until his retirement in 1999, although he remained active in collaborative research for long after that date. Before joining us Ray spent the majority of his university career in Oxford. Throughout his career he had a close association with Varian Instruments, having worked there in the 1960s when the company was at the cutting edge of developments in NMR.

Ray was a superb communicator and was often the 'star turn' at NMR conferences - his presentations were characteristically littered with wry jokes, self-deprecating remarks, and illustrated by his beautiful hand-drawn slides and cartoons. He was a great mentor to his students who remember him with great fondness. Many have gone on to achieve significant success in their own rights, and all acknowledge Ray as a significant influence on their own careers.

A gentleman scientist and a devoted family man who will be greatly missed but whose legacy is substantial.