Professor Ruedenberg received the M.S. in chemistry and mathematics from the University of Fribourg, Switzerland, in 1942 and the Ph.D. in theoretical physics (meson field theory) with Gregor Wentzel from the University of Zürich, Switzerland, in 1950. As research associate with Robert S. Mulliken at the Laboratory of Molecular Spectra and Structure of the University of Chicago (1950-1955), he was part of the team that pioneered ab initio quantum chemistry. In 1955 he joined the ISU Chemistry department.
The object of professor Ruedenberg’s research is the understanding and prediction of molecular structure and spectra, in particular of chemical bonding and reactions, on the basis of the quantum theory of electrons in atoms and molecules. His work is roughly focused into three quantum chemical directions: theoretical and computational advances in ab-initio methodologies, the quantitative recovery of the chemical model of atoms and bonding synergisms from accurate ab-initio electronic wave functions, and the determination and analyses of potential energy surfaces governing chemical reactions.
Professor Ruedenberg has received honorary doctorates from the Universities of Basel (Switzerland), Bielefeld (Germany) and Siegen (Germany). He has received the Midwest Award of the American Chemical Society of 1982, the National Award for Theoretical Chemistry of the American Chemical Society of 2002, and Schrödinger Medal of the World Association of Theoretical and Computational Chemists 2018. He is a member of the International Academy of Quantum Molecular Sciences and an honorary member of the International Academy of Mathematical Chemistry. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Physical Society and the American Institute of Chemists. For more than a decade, he was editor-in-chief and he is now honorary editor of the journal Theoretical Chemistry Accounts / Theoretica Chimica Acta.