10 July 1902|
Königshütte (Chorzów), Silesia
(present day Poland)
20 June 1958
Cologne, West Germany
I G Farben Industrie,
University of Cologne
University of Berlin
University of Kiel
|Known for||Diels–Alder reaction|
|Notable awards||Nobel Prize for Chemistry (1950)|
Alder was born in the industrial area of Königshütte, Silesia (modern day Chorzów, Upper Silesia, Poland), where he received his early schooling. Alder left the area for political reasons when Königshütte became part of Poland in 1922. He studied chemistry at the University of Berlin from 1922, and later at the University of Kiel where his PhD was awarded in 1926 for work supervised by Diels.
In 1930 Alder was appointed reader for chemistry at organic compounds. In all he published more than 151 papers in this field.
Alder received several honorary degrees and other awards, most famously the 1950 Nobel Prize in Chemistry which he shared with his teacher Diels for their work on what is now known as the Diels–Alder reaction. The lunar crater Alder is named in his honour. The insecticide aldrin, created through a Diels–Alder reaction, is also named after the scientist.
- Nobel Prize biography
-  English Translation of Diels and Alder's seminal 1928 German article that won them the Nobel prize. English title: 'Syntheses of the hydroaromatic series'; German title "Synthesen in der hydroaromatischen Reihe".