Skip to content

Mormon Scientist: The life and faith of Henry Eyring.

Memoirs of the man who fused science & religion

Featured Memory

Freshman chemistry class

Paul W. Jacobson |  posted: May 23, 2008 |  occurred: 1956 |  in: Salt Lake City, Utah,

We had assembled for our morning chemistry class when it appeared the instructor was not coming. We were meeting in the large lecture room in the chem building on the circle at the U, and suddenly, in walks Dr. Eyring, to substitute in a freshman chemistry class.

We were studying atomic matter and he taught us about the electrons circling around the nucleus. What I remember best was how he described the nucleus as the furnace in an apartment building and the electron orbits as the different floors of the building. His point was that the outer orbits were not as stable as the closer ones, much as the tenents on the first floor were warmer and more comfortable that those on the top floor. I will never forget that lecture, and the fun he had teaching us this principle.