He earned his undergraduate degree in chemistry at ETH Zurich in 1956 and then briefly served in the Swiss military before returning to ETH for a doctorate in physical chemistry, which he earned in 1962.He married Magdalena Kielholz the next year. Survivors include his wife and their three children, Anna, Katharina and Hans-Martin. Matthias Ernst, his former student, said Dr. Ernst died in a retirement home.In 1963, Dr. Ernst joined the technology company Varian Associates in Palo Alto, Calif., as a scientist. It was there that he developed F.T.-N.M.R.
I imagine his military service was just a couple of years - can't imagine what the chemical world would like if there was mandatory 2- or 3-year military service in the United States in modern times before they went to graduate school. Also interesting that Professor Ernst worked in industry before he became a professor!