Traveling with the Atom

Allegheny College

(compiled by Dr.Glen E. Rodgers)


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Michael Faraday
English Chemist
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Contribution to the Development of the Atomic Concept
Although Michael Faraday had no direct hand in the development of the atomic concept, he is sometimes regarded as one of the greatest experimentalist who ever lived.

His list of accomplishments in chemistry and physics (in approximate chronological order) includes but is not restricted to 
the invention of the first simple electric motor;
the liquefaction of chlorine;
the production of optical grade glass;
the discovery of organic compounds (the most famous being benzene);
invention of the electrical transformer, discovering electromagnetic induction; 
introduction of "lines of force" for magnetic fields;
proposed the existence of electromagnetic waves;
the formulation of two laws of electrolysis (basis of electrochemistry);
rotation of plane of polarized light by magnetic fields

He was a student of Humphry Davy and became one of the early driving forces at The Royal Institution.  He initiated both the Friday Night and "Christmas Lectures" that continue today.  He was a member of the Royal Society and a Professor of Chemistry at the Royal Institution.

Web Sources of Biographical Information
Report of two interviews
Woodrow Wilson Web Page
Michael Faraday
(Steven J. Dick)
Web link #3 (put in descriptive title)

Selected Biographical Books, Sections of Books, and Articles
Full biographical information on Sacks' book Uncle Tungsten pp 125, 127, 165-166
Full biographical information on Asimov's Biographical Encyclopedia of Science and Technology pp 315-320
Michael Faraday and the Royal Institution (The Genius of Man and Place), John Meurig Thomas, Adam Hilger Publisher, New York (1991). The Chemical History of a Candle
by Michael Faraday, Jeanyee Wong (Illustrator) 

Some Scientific/Historical Traveling Sites
Faraday Museum(1)* Bottom Floor of The Royal Institution, Albemarle Street (Off Piccadilly), London, England
Statue of Faraday(1)* In the entrance lobby,
The Royal Institution
Small Plaque(1) Westminster Abbey
London, England
* see following Rodgers link to scientific/historical sites for further information.
(1) Taken from The Scientific Traveler, Charles Tanford and Jacqueline, John Wiley & Sons, NY (1992).
(2) Taken from A Travel Guide to Scientific Sites of the British Isles, Charles Tanford and Jacqueline Reynolds, John Wiley & Sons, NY (1995).
(3) Taken from Guide of Eurpoean Museums with collections on History of Chemistry, compiled by Jan W. van Spronsen, Federation of European Societies, Antwerp (1996)
Link to Dr. Rodgers' Scientific/Historical Site on Michael Faraday.
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