Chemistry

Bunsen


Robert Wilhelm Eberhard von Bunsen was a German chemist, born in Gottingen on March 31, 1811. His main recognition is the Bunsen burner, a burner that he perfected and which was invented by physicist Michael Faraday. Worked with spectral emissions of heated elements.

Bunsen was the youngest son of four brothers. He studied at the University of Gottingen and earned his doctorate at the age of 19. From 1830 to 1833, Bunsen traveled through Western Europe. During these trips, he met scientists such as Runge, Justus von Liebig and Mitscherlich.

Back in Germany, he was a professor at the University of Gottingen and began to study the insolubility of metallic salts of arsenious acid. Today, his discovery of the use of hydrated iron oxide as a precipitating agent is still the best known antidote to combat arsenic poisoning.

In 1836, succeeded Wohler at Kassel. After teaching there for two years, he accepted a position at the University of Marburg, where he studied arsine derivatives. Bunsen almost died of arsenic poisoning. He also lost part of an eye's sight from an explosion that projected a shard of glass onto his eye.

In 1841, Bunsen created the carbon electrode, which would replace the expensive platinum electrode used in batteries.

In 1852, he assumed the post of Leopold Gmelin at Heidlberg. Studied the obtaining of hydrogen chloride.

In 1859, together with Gustav Kirchhoff, studied emission spectra of heated elements. It was at this time that perfected the burner. It was already invented by Michael faraday in 1885. Today it is known as the Bunsen burner or Bunsen burner.
Bunsen retired at the age of 78 and shifted his interest to geology, which had long been his hobby.

He died in Heidelberg on August 16, 1899.