WERNER (Werner), Alfred( Swiss chemist, Nobel Prize in Chemistry, 1913)
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Biography WERNER (Werner), Alfred
December 12, 1866, Mr.. - November 15, 1919
Swiss chemist Alfred Werner was born in g. Mulhouse, located in the French province of Alsace. He was the last of four children turner Jean Adam Werner and Salome Jeannette (Teshe) Werner. The family stayed in Mulhouse, where in 1871, after the Franco-Prussian War, Alsace became part Germanskoy empire, but Werner continued to consider themselves French. The boy was given to study in a Catholic school, where he attracted attention due to such traits as an extraordinary self-confidence and desire for independence. From 1878 to 1885. He studied chemistry at the Technical School. Passing over the years military service in Germany army in. attended lectures on organic chemistry at the Technical University in Karlsruhe.
After serving military service,. entered the Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, where in 1889. a graduate chemical engineer, and the next year - doctor's degree. While in school he was not very proficient in mathematics, in chemistry, he was extraordinarily talented. His doctoral thesis dealt with the spatial arrangement of atoms in a nitrogen-containing compounds.
In 1874,. Joseph Achille Le Bel and Jacob Van't Hoff proved that when the carbon atom is linked with other atoms around it there is a tetrahedron (a geometric body with four faces). It was known that nitrogen usually forms three bonds. For example, in the molecule of ammonia nitrogen atom is located at the top of a three-sided pyramid, and in the corners of its base are three hydrogen atoms. V. and his adviser Arthur Ganch proved that the nitrogen atom can also be tetrahedrally bound.
After a year in Paris, where he studied under the guidance of thermochemistry Marcellin Berthelot, B. in 1892. returned to Zurich and began to lecture on organic chemistry at the Federal Institute of Technology. The following year he began to associate professor and head of the chemical laboratory. In 1895, Mr.. V. elected Professor of Organic Chemistry. Lectures on the subject, he began to read in 1902
At that time it was believed that atoms consist of positively charged nucleus surrounded by negatively charged electrons, located in the orbital shells. V. Each envelope contained only a certain number of electrons. Atom is most stable when the outermost orbital is filled entirely. To achieve such stability, the atoms in molecules are held by chemical bonds. The number of bonds formed by atom, corresponds to its valence, which is equal to the number of electrons in the outer orbitals. There are different types of chemical bonds. In ionic bonding atoms give or accept electrons. When covalent bond electrons are shared by two atoms. In the case of hydrogen bonding hydrogen atom is a kind of bridge between two electronegative atoms. Another type of communication occurs in crystals of metals, where the valence electrons are shared collectively by all the atoms of the crystal, rather than a pair of atoms, as in the covalent bond. The traditional theory of valency explaining how the atoms are linked, but not to clarify the question of what and how is the binding in a large class of compounds consisting of molecules neorganichesskih. And explain the structure and nature of chemical bonds was necessary.
In the article 'On the theory of affinity and valence' ( "Contribution to the Theory of Affinity and Valance"), published in 1891. in a little-known magazine, In. defines affinity as "force emanating from the center of the atom and is evenly distributed in all directions, the geometric expression of which, therefore, is not a certain number of directions, and the spherical surface '. Two years later, in an article 'On the structure of inorganic compounds' ( "A Contribution to the Construction of Inorganic Compounds") in. advanced coordination theory according to which the inorganic molecular compounds form the central core of complexing atoms. Around these central atoms are located in the form of simple geometric octahedron a number of other atoms or molecules. The number of atoms grouped around a central core, in. called the coordination number. He believed that if there is a general coordination bond pair of electrons by one molecule or atom gives another. Since B. suggested the existence of compounds, . that nobody has ever seen and not synthesized, . His theory caused mistrust on the part of many famous chemists, . who considered, . that it unnecessarily complicates the picture of the chemical structure and connections,
. So over the next two decades. and his staff created a new molecular compounds, whose existence is postulated his theory. On their findings, they reported in more than 150 publications. Among them compounds were created by the molecule, exhibiting optical activity, ie. ability to reject polarized light, but do not contain carbon atoms, which are believed to be necessary for the optical activity of molecules. In 1911, Mr.. In the implementation. synthesis of more than 40 optically active molecules that do not contain carbon atoms, has convinced the chemical community in the justice of his theory.
In 1913, Mr.. V. was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry "in recognition of his work on the nature of the atoms in molecules, . which allowed for a fresh look at the results of previous research and new opportunities for research, . especially in the field of inorganic chemistry ',
. According to Theodor NordstrцTm, who represented him on behalf of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, working in. 'has given impetus to the development of inorganic chemistry', triggering a revival of interest in this area since it has for some time remained in oblivion.
In Zurich in 1894, the same year, when in. became a citizen of Switzerland, he married Emma Wilhelmina Gisker. They had a son and a daughter. In In. during his work was more than 200 doctoral students, among whom he passed for a demanding coach. Being a sociable man, he enjoyed playing billiards, chess, cards, the autumn holidays in the Alps. Shortly after the scientist was awarded the Nobel Prize, he was diagnosed with cerebral arteriosclerosis. He resigned and a month later, on Nov. 15, 1919, died at the age of 52 years.
In addition to the Nobel Prize in. Leblanc was awarded the Medal of the French Chemical Society. He is an honorary professor at the University of Geneva, member of the British Society of Chemistry, Gottingen Academy of Sciences and many other scientific societies.