(Uppsala, 1859 - Stockholm, 1927) Swedish chemist and physicist. Belonging to a family of farmers, his father was Manager and surveyor of an agricultural holding.
Svante August Arrhenius
He studied at Uppsala University, where received his doctorate in 1884 with a thesis that dealt with the electrical conduction of the dissolutions electrolyte, which exposed the germ of his theory according to which the electrolyte molecules dissociate into two or more ions, and the strength of an acid or a base is in direct relation with its dissociation.
Svante August Arrhenius
This theory was strongly criticized by his teachers and classmates, who granted his work the minimum possible rating. However, the large you popes of foreign chemical, such as Wilhelm Ostwald, Ludwig Boltzmann and J. H. Van't Hoff, they just appreciated his theory and offered their support and any other contract, with what his reputation was growing in their own country.
The total development of its theory would mean him five years of study, during which his companions were accepting the results. Meanwhile, since 1884, Arrhenius worked as a Professor of physics at the University of Uppsala and, from 1891, at the Royal Institute of technology in Stockholm; later he was rector of the University of Stockholm. Despite receiving several offers from different countries, chose to follow in the Swedish capital, where he continued his studies, even to formulate (independently from Ostwald) new definitions of acid and base.
With the award of the prize Nobel Prize in chemistry in 1903 also obtained a greater consideration in their homeland: in 1905 he was appointed director of the Nobel Institute of physical chemistry, created specifically for him and very soon became a center of research of world importance. During a season that went on at the University of California was devoted to immunochemistry and published the Inmunochemistry (1907).
Great man of science, the work of Svante August Arrhenius covered very disparate fields. His research on the influence of temperature on the chemical reactions led him to establish the equation that bears his name. For his work on the ionization of electrolytes, which allowed to interpret the physical laws of electrolysis, was granted in 1902 the prestigious medal Davy of the Royal Society of London; In addition to the Nobel Prize in chemistry in 1903, Gibbs of the United States medal he received in 1911. You should also the first finding of the effect greenhouse (increase in the temperature of the atmosphere due to the increase in the concentration of carbon dioxide).
Arrhenius also dealt with cosmogony in works such as Lehrbuch der kosmischen Physik (1900); his contributions include a theory on the formation of the comets based on radiation pressure and a cosmological theory explaining the evolution of the stars. She was also very strongly interested in the problem of the origin of life, which was considered a universal and not only own land property. In his book Erde und Weltall (1926), compilation of previous works, formulated a hypothesis (call of "panspermia") according to which the germs of life are widespread throughout the universe, but are developed only when they find the right conditions. This theory was collected years later by many scientists, which include Fred Hoyle and Francis Crick.