Priyada Ranjan Ray obtained MA (1911) from University of Calcutta and also DSc (hc) from the universities of Calcutta, Jadavpur and Burdwan. He worked as Professor of Chemistry, City College, Kolkata (1919); Assistant Palit Professor of Chemistry, University College of Science; Khaira Professor (1937), Palit Professor and Head (1952), Department of Chemistry; also Honorary Professor, and Director (1956-58), Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science (IACS), Jadavpur.
Academic and Research Achievements: Ray carried out intensive research in inorganic, analytical and nuclear chemistry as a result of which he introduced useful analytical reagents for volumetric, gravimetric and spectrophotometric analysis of metals. His contributions to coordination complexes are highly significant; established, for the first time, the isomerism of thiosulphuric acid. He was acknowledged as an authority on complexes, valency and microchemistry, and magnetochemistry in India. Using the radioisotope 128I, he proved that there was no essential difference between normal covalency and coordinate covalency. He revised and enlarged Acharya PC Ray’s book History of Hindu Chemistry and updated it into History of Chemistry in Ancient and Medieval India. He also made scientific synopsis in English of ancient Ayurvedic texts, Charaka Samhita and Susruta Samhita, published by INSA.
Other Contributions: Ray was Member of INSA Council (1943-45). He served as Honorary Editor for Indian Chemical Society’s publications.
Awards and Honours: Professor Ray was awarded SS Bhatnagar Medal by INSA (1968). He was elected President of the Indian Chemical Society (1947-48), Indian Science News Association (1958-59), and Chemistry Section, Indian Science Congress (1932). Lectureship awards won by him include: PC Ray Memorial Lecture by Indian Chemical Society (1954); Mahendra Lal Sircar Memorial Lecture by IACS (1960); JC Ghosh Memorial Lecture by Indian Chemical Society (1963); Rajshekhar Bose Memorial Lecture by Bangiya Vijnan Parishad (1963); SS Bhatnagar Memorial Lecture by INSA (1968); JC Bose Memorial Lecture by Bose Institute (1971); and Sivaprasad Chatterjee Memorial Lecture by Bangiya Vijnan Parishad (1973).