Marcellin Berthelot

Picture of Marcellin Berthelot

Date of Birth: 10/25/1827

Age: 79

Place of Birth: Paris

Citizenship: France


Berthelot Pierre Eugene Marcellin (Berthelot, Pierre-Eugene-Marcellin) (1827-1907), French organic chemist and physical chemist, science historian, social activist. Born in Paris in the family physician 25 October 1827. He graduated from the Henri IV high school, then the University of Paris. In 1851 he received a professorship A.Zh.Balara assistant at the College de France, in 1859 became a professor at the Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Chemistry in Paris, in 1865 he founded and headed the Department of Organic Chemistry at the College de France. From 1876 - Inspector of Higher Education, in 1886-1887 - Minister of Education, since 1889 - permanent secretary of the Paris Academy of Sciences. In 1895 he was Minister of Foreign Affairs.

In chemical science Berthelot became famous as one of the founders of organic synthesis. Using the original methods of the first to get out of the elements and simple starting materials, many new and already known natural compounds belonging to different classes. In 1853-1854, studying the interaction of glycerol and fatty acids (stearic, palmitic, oleic and others.), Received analogues of natural fats, thus proving the possibility of their synthesis. These works are included in all textbooks of organic and biological chemistry, as well as treatises on philosophy as an example of the conversion of `things sebe` in `thing for nas`. Of fundamental importance was the implementation of the synthesis of ethanol from ethylene and water with sulfuric acid (1854), which opened the way to a new process for the production of this important compound. Previously ethanol obtained only by fermentation of sugars.

A special place in the studies took Berthelot hydrocarbons, which are devoted half a century (with interruptions) working scientist, numerous articles and generalizing work "Hydrocarbons. Experimental studies". 1851-1901 (Les carbures d`hydrog & # 232; ne, v 1-3, 1901.). Berthelot spent massive synthesis of these compounds and their derivatives of the simple substances, sometimes of the chemical elements. Thus, carbon and hydrogen in the voltaic arc acetylene he received, and based on it - benzene, styrene, naphthalene, and fused aromatic and complex system. In 1867 Berthelot proposed a universal method for the recovery of organic compounds with hydrogen iodide, was widely used before the discovery of catalytic hydrogenation with hydrogen gas.

Starting from 1865 Berthelot actively engaged in thermochemistry, he held extensive calorimetric studies which led, in particular, to the invention of `bomby` calorimeter (1881); he owned the concept of `` endotermicheskoy` ekzotermicheskoy` and reactions. Berthelot obtained extensive data on the thermal effects of a huge number of reactions on the heat of decomposition and formation of many substances. His presentation thermochemical scientist outlined in the two-volume "Thermochemistry" (Thermochimie, v. 1-2, 1897).

Berthelot also engaged in the study of chemistry and physical chemistry of explosives (he studied the laws of combustion determined velocity of propagation of the blast wave, launched the production of explosives for the defense of Paris during the siege of the city by the Germans in 1870). Known scientist working in the field of agricultural chemistry and biochemistry. Berthelot discovered the role of carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen and other elements in the growth and development of plants found in the soil, inhabited by micro-organisms, nitrogen fixation occurs. These and other studies in the field of biochemistry, presented to them in the 4-volume work "The plant chemistry and agronomy" (Chimie v & # 233; g & # 233; tale et agricole, v 1-4, 1899.).

Berthelot studied the history of a lot of chemistry. In 1885 came his work "The Origin of Alchemy" (Les origines de l`alchimie, 1885), in 1887-1893 he published a Greek meeting, Syrian and Arab alchemical manuscripts with translations and commentaries. Berthelot belongs to the book "Revolution in the chemistry of Lavoisier." (La r & # 233;. Volution chimique Lavoisier, 1890) and the works of other great chemist.

In 1889 Berthelot was elected as one of the forty members of the French Academy of Letters and Arts (aka `bessmertnyh`). He was a member of almost all the academies of the world, including the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences.

Berthelot died in Paris on March 18, 1907.