Professor Emeritus Edward Merrill, chemical engineer who helped found the field of bioengineering, dies at 96

Edward W. Merrill, professor emeritus of chemical engineering, died peacefully at his home on Aug. 6 at the age of 96, surrounded by his children and grandchildren.

A longtime chemical engineer at MIT, Merrill was a founding contributor to the field of biological engineering. He developed the area of biomaterials and over a 66-year career pioneered several fields of bioengineering.

“Ed made an indelible mark on each life he touched, professionally and personally. Not only did his research contributions help better the lives of thousands, but his commitment to education and mentorship helped shape a generation of biomedical engineers,” says Paula Hammond, the David H. Koch (1962) Professor in Engineering and head of the MIT Department of Chemical Engineering. “I experienced it first-hand as a student and a co-teacher; he raised the bar for all of us.”

Born in New Bedford, Massachusetts, on Aug. 31, 1923, Merrill grew up in…
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