(Like, today Italy, 1745 - ID, 1827) Italian physicist who invented the first electric generating cell of DC. From a young age he showed a great love to the study of natural phenomena. He received his first training at the College of Jesuits in his hometown, in opposition to her parents, who wanted her lawyer, and teachers, who wanted to take him to the religious State, abandoned the regular studies and undertook the cultivation of physics on their own. At eighteen he already maintained correspondence with the leading European electrologos.
From 1765 to 1769, with the help of his friend Giulio Cesare Gattoni, priest, devoted himself particularly to the study of electrical phenomena, which played in a very personal way. In 1767 he wrote about some observations and ideas about electricity to Giovan Battista Beccaria, Professor at Turin, who did not approve them. Volta then replied with the first printed text, of saw attracting ignis electrici phaenomenis inde pendentibus ac, which can be considered the germ of all electric doctrine of Alessandro Volta.
In 1775, his interest in electricity led him to invent an artifact known as the electrophorus, used to generate static electricity. A year earlier he had been appointed Professor of the Royal College of as physics. In 1778 he identified and isolated the methane gas, and the following year he became Professor of Physics of the University of Pavia.
In 1780, a friend of Volta, Luigi Galvani, noted that the contact of two different metals with a frog muscle originating the emergence of electric current. Volta carried out various experiments on the phenomena tested by Galvani, and after his initial enthusiasm, began to doubt them and consider them a common electricity-induced nerve excitation effect. In 1794, Volta began experimenting with metals only, and concluded that animal tissue was not required to produce current. This finding prompted a strong controversy among supporters of animal electricity and defenders of the metallic electricity.
To 1796-97, with the employment of their electroscopes and its condenser, Alessandro Volta experimentally verified the existence of a power imbalance, called "tension" between two different metals any. This fundamental discovery led him to try to get the multiplication of such imbalances through appropriate chains of conductors in contact. In the course of investigations carried out for three years failed to verify a number of properties that allowed the construction of the first electric battery. The demonstration, in 1800, the first electric battery run ended to previous controversies and certified the victory of the theses of Volta-friendly side; a real triumph, which, however, did not alter the kindly serenity of the illustrious scientist.
A year later, Alessandro Volta made a new demonstration of their current generator before Napoleon. Impressed, the French Emperor named Volta count and Senator of the Kingdom of Lombardy. The Emperor of Austria, for its part, appointed him director of the Faculty of philosophy of the University of Padua in 1815. Discovered the battery, all Volta activity was oriented towards the study of their strictly electrical, such as intensity and conductivity properties, field in which already carried out some important progress and anticipated others.
Exceptional man culture, breadth of judgment and force of wit, strength dialectic, experimental skill, moral rectitude and religious faith, the Sage died admired and mourned by the world of science, and bequeathed to posterity the example of his life and the great benefit of his work. The unit of electromotive force of the international system bears the name of Volt in his honor from the year 1881.