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George de Hevesy
George Charles de Hevesy (born as Hevesy György, also known as Georg Karl von Hevesy) (August 1, 1885 in Budapest – July 5, 1966) was a Hungarian Radiochemist who was important in the development of the tracer method where radioactive tracers are used to study chemical processes, e.g., the metabolism of animals. For this he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1943.
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He started studying chemistry at the University of Budapest for one year, and at the Technical University of Berlin for several months, but changed to the University of Freiburg. There he came in contact with Ludwig Gattermann and Rießenfeld. In 1906 he started his PhD thesis with Georg Franz Julius Meyer. In 1908 he got a position at the ETH. When Richard Lorenz left for the University of Frankfurt and Richard Willstätter tried to convince him to stay in Zurich he decided to go to the University of Karlsruhe to work with Carl Bosch. To learn new methods he joined the laboratory of Rutherford at the University of Manchester in 1911.
When Germany invaded Denmark in World War II, he dissolved the gold Nobel Prizes of Max von Laue and James Franck into aqua regia to prevent the Nazis from stealing them. He placed the resulting solution on a shelf in his laboratory at the Niels Bohr Institute. After the war, he returned to find the solution undisturbed and precipitated the gold out of the acid. The Nobel Society then recast the Nobel Prizes using the original gold.
In 1923 he was a co-discoverer of Hafnium (Latin Hafnia for "Copenhagen", the home town of Niels Bohr), with Dirk Coster, validating the original 1869 prediction of Mendeleev.
George de Hevesy married Pia Riis in 1924. They had one son and three daughters.
Albert Ludwigs University of Freiburg
Categories: Hungarian chemists | Nobel laureates in Chemistry
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "George_de_Hevesy". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|