Faculty & Research > Emeritus & Retired Faculty > Frederick S. Richardson

Richardson, Fred

Frederick S. Richardson

Professor Emeritus of Chemistry

Room 112, Physical and Life Sciences Building
(434) 982-6374

B.S. Dickinson College

Ph.D. Princeton University

Professor Frederick S. Richardson earned his B.S. degree at Dickinson College summa cum laude in 1961. In 1966, he received his Ph.D. at Princeton University working with Walter Kauzmann. He served in the US Army for two years before starting his NSF Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at the University of California, San Diego. In 1969, he joined the faculty in the Chemistry Department at the University of Virginia. Prof. Richardson served as chair of the department from 1983 – 87 and 1992 – 1997. In 1991, he was appointed a Commonwealth Professor. Prof. Richardson is an exceptional physical chemist and is known for his research, teaching, and mentorship.

He was appointed as a Henry Dreyfus Foundation Teacher-Scholar from 1973-78. He taught undergraduate general, physical, and biophysical chemistry, as well as, graduate courses in all areas of physical chemistry. He research supervised 36 Ph.D. students, 6 M.S. students and 28 postdoctoral fellows.

Prof. Richardson has published over 220 papers in scientific journals or books. His principal research interests are:

  • Electronic structure and spectroscopy of molecules and ions in solution and in crystals.
  • Natural and magnetic chiroptical properties of molecular systems.
  • Intermolecular chiral recognition and discrimination phenomena.
  • Spectroscopic probes of metal-ion coordination sites in biomolecular systems.
  • Rare-earth chemistry and spectroscopy.
  • Theory and measurement of nonlinear optical processes in condensed-phase materials.