This versatile Nobel prize winner attained first degree at the age of 14 & determined atomic weights !!!

Theodore William Richards (January 31, 1868 – April 2, 1928) was the first American scientist to receive the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, earning the award “in recognition of his exact determinations of the atomic weights of a large number of the chemical elements.” He was born in German town, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to William Trost Richards, a land- and seascape painter, and Anna née Matlack, a poet. Richards received most of his pre-college education from his mother. Beginning in 1878, the Richards family spent two years in Europe, largely in England, where Theodore Richards’ scientific interests grew stronger. 

 After the family’s return to the United States, he entered Haverford College, Pennsylvania in 1883 at the age of 14, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in 1885. He then enrolled at Harvard University and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1886, as further preparation for graduate studies. Richards continued on at Harvard, taking as his dissertation topic the determination of the atomic weight of oxygen relative to hydrogen. His doctoral advisor was Josiah Parsons Cooke.

 Richards’ maintained interests in both art and music. Among his recreations were sketching, golf, and sailing. He died at Cambridge, Massachusetts, on April 2, 1928, at the age of 60. According to one of his descendants, Richards suffered from “chronic respiratory problems and a prolonged depression.” 

About half of Richards’s scientific research concerned atomic weights, starting in 1886 with his graduate studies. On returning to Harvard in 1889, this was his first line of research, continuing up to his death. According to Forbes, by 1932 the atomic weights of 55 elementshad been studied by Richards and his students. Among the potential sources of error Richards uncovered in such determinations was the tendency of certain salts to occlude gases or foreign solutes on precipitation. As an example of the care Richards used in his work, Emsley reports that he carried out 15,000 recrystallizations of thulium bromate in order to obtain the pure element thulium for an atomic weight measurement.

 Richards was the first to show, by chemical analysis, that an element could have different atomic weights. He was asked to analyze samples of naturally occurring lead and lead produced by radioactive decay. His measurements showed that the two samples had different atomic weights, supporting the concepts of isotopes.

 Other scientific work of Theodore Richards included investigations of the compressibilities of atoms, heats of solution and neutralization, and the electrochemistry of amalgamsHis investigation of electrochemical potentials at low temperatures was among the work that led, in the hands of others, to the Nernst heat theorem and the Third law of thermodynamics, although not without heated debate between Nernst and Richards. Richards also is credited with the invention of the adiabatic calorimeter as well as the nephelometer, which was devised for his work on the atomic weight of strontium.

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A pretty turbulent journey of this night school attendant who went on to create one of the most well known cars of our times !!

Ferdinand Porsche (3 September 1875 – 30 January 1951) was an automotive engineer and founder of the Porsche car company. He is best known for creating the first gasoline-electric hybrid vehicle (Lohner-Porsche), the Volkswagen Beetle, the Mercedes-Benz SS/SSK, and several Porsche automobiles. In addition, Porsche designed the 1923 Benz Tropfenwagen, which was the first race car with a mid-engine, rear-wheel drive layout. Porsche was an important contributor to the German war effort during World War II. He was involved in the production of advanced tanks, such as the Tiger ITiger IIElefant, andPanzer VIII Maus, as well as other weapon systems, such as the V-1 flying bombs. He was arecipient of the German National Prize for Art and Science, the SS-Ehrenring, and the War Merit Cross. In 1996, Porsche was inducted into the International Motorsports Hall of Fame and in 1999 posthumously won the award of Car Engineer of the Century.

Ferdinand Porsche was born to German-speaking parents in Maffersdorf, northern Bohemia, part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire at that time, and today part of the Czech Republic. He showed a strong aptitude for mechanical work at a very early age. He attended classes at the Imperial Technical School in Reichenberg at night while helping his father in his mechanical shop by dayThanks to a referral, Porsche landed a job with the Béla Egger Electrical company in Vienna when he turned 18. In Vienna he would sneak into the local university whenever he could after work. Other than attending classes there, Porsche never received any higher engineering education. During his five years with Béla Egger, Porsche first developed the electric hub motor.

In 1898, Porsche joined the Vienna-based factory Jakob Lohner & Company, which produced coaches for Emperor Franz Joseph I of Austria as well as for the kings of England, Sweden, and Romania. Jakob Lohner had begun construction of automobiles in 1896 under Ludwig Lohner in the trans-Danubian suburb of Floridsdorf. Their first design was the Egger-Lohner vehicle (also referred to as the C.2 Phaeton). First unveiled in Vienna, Austria, on June 26, 1898, Porsche had engraved the code “P1” (standing for Porsche, number one, signifying Ferdinand Porsche’s first design) onto all the key components.

Still employed by Lohner, Porsche introduced the “Lohner-Porsche Mixte Hybrid” in 1901. This is the first petroleum electric hybrid vehicle on record, although since sufficiently reliable gears and couplings were not available at the time, he chose to make it a series-hybrid, an arrangement now more common in diesel-electric or turbo-electric railway locomotives than in automobiles.

In 1906, Austro-Daimler recruited Porsche as their chief designer. Porsche’s best known Austro-Daimler car: Modell 27/80; was designed for the Prince Henry Trial in 1910. Porsche had advanced to Managing Director by 1916 and received the honorary doctorate degree, “Dr. techn h.c.” from the Vienna University of Technology in 1916, hence the “Dr. Ing h.c” in his name, meaning “Doktor Ingenieur Honoris Causa“. Porsche successfully continued to construct racing cars, winning 43 out of 53 races with his 1922 design. In 1923, Porsche left Austro-Daimler after differences ensued about the future direction of car development. A few months later Porsche was given new job as Daimler Motoren Gesellschaft’s Technical Director in Stuttgart, Weimar Germany, which was already a major center for the German automotive industry. In 1924 received another honorary doctorate from the Stuttgart Technical University for his work at Daimler Motoren Gesellschaft in Stuttgart and was later given the honorary title Professor. He left in 1929 for Steyr Automobile, but the Great Depression brought about Steyr’s economic collapse and Porsche ended up being unemployed.

In April 1931 Porsche founded his consulting firm. Their first project was the design of a middle class car for Wanderer. Other commissioned designs followed. As the business grew, Porsche decided to work on his own design as well, which happened to be a reincarnation of the small car concept from his days at Daimler-Benz in Stuttgart. He financed the project with a loan on his life insurance. With car commissions low in the depressed economic climate, Porsche founded a subsidiary company Hochleistungs Motor GmbH (High Performance Engines Ltd.) in 1932 to develop a racing car, for which he had no customer. In June 1934, Porsche received a contract from Hitler to design a “people’s car” (or Volkswagen), following on from his previous designs such as the 1931 Type 12 car designed for Zündapp. The first two prototype cars were completed in 1935. These were followed by several further pre-production batches during 1936 to 1939. Since being engaged by the Nazi authorities in building the Volskauto, Porsche was praised as the Great German Engineer. By 1938, Porsche was using the SS as security members and drivers at his factory, and later set up a special unit called SS Sturmwerk Volkswagen. Mass production of the car, which later became known as the Beetle, began after the end of the war. 

On 15 December 1945, French authorities arrested Porsche, Anton Piëch, and Ferry Porsche as war criminals. While Ferry was soon set free, Ferdinand and Anton were held in a Dijon prison for 20 months without trial. The innovative 4WD design never raced, but the money it received was used to redeem Ferdinand Porsche from prison.

The company also started work on a new design, the Porsche 356, the first car to carry the Porsche brand name. The company then was located in Gmünd in Carinthia, where they had relocated from Stuttgart to avoid Allied bombing. The company started manufacturing the Porsche 356 in an old saw mill in Gmünd. They made only 49 cars, which were built entirely by hand.

The Porsche family returned to Stuttgart in 1949 not knowing how to restart their business. When Ferry Porsche resurrected the company he counted on series production figures of about 1,500. More than 78,000 Porsche 356s were manufactured in the following 17 years.Porsche was later contracted by Volkswagen for additional consulting work and received a royalty on every Volkswagen Type I (Beetle) car manufactured. This provided Porsche with a comfortable income as more than 20 million Type I were built. A few weeks later, Porsche suffered a stroke. He did not fully recover, and died on 30 January 1951.

In 1996, Porsche was inducted into the International Motorsports Hall of Fame and in 1999 posthumously won the award of Car Engineer of the Century.

This son on a locomotive driver changed the way of commute via road !!!

Karl Friedrich Benz (November 25, 1844 – April 4, 1929) was a German engine designer and car engineer, generally regarded as the inventor of the petrol-powered automobile, and together with Bertha Benz,pioneering founder of the automobile manufacturer Mercedes-Benz. Benz received a patent for his work and all the processes that made the internal combustion engine feasible for use in an automobile. In 1879, his first engine patent was granted to him, and in 1886, Benz was granted a patent for his first automobile. On July 20, 1872, Karl Benz and Bertha Ringer married. They had five children: Eugen (1873), Richard (1874), Clara (1877), Thilde (1882), and Ellen (1890).

 Karl Friedrich Michael Vaillant was born in Mühlburg, now a borough of Karlsruhe, Baden, which is part of modern Germany, to Josephine Vaillant and a locomotive driver, Johann George Benz, whom she married a few months later.According to German law, the child acquired the Name “Benz” by legal marriage of his parents Benz and Vaillant. When he was two years old, his father was killed in a railway accident, and his name was changed to Karl Friedrich Benz in remembrance of his father. Despite living in near poverty, his mother strove to give him a good education. Benz attended the local Grammar School in Karlsruhe and was a prodigious student. 

 In 1853, at the age of nine he started at the scientifically oriented Lyceum. Benz hadoriginally focused his studies on locksmithing, but eventually followed his father’s steps toward locomotive engineering. On September 30, 1860, at age fifteen, he passed the entrance exam for mechanical engineering at the University of Karlsruhe, which he subsequently attended. Benz was graduated July 9, 1864 at nineteen. During these years, while riding his bicycle, he started to envision concepts for a vehicle that would eventually become the horseless carriage.

 Following his formal education, Benz had seven years of professional training in several companies, but did not fit well in any of them. He then moved to Mannheim towork as a draftsman and designer in a scales factory. In 1868 he went to Pforzheim to work for a bridge building company Gebrüder Benckiser Eisenwerke und Maschinenfabrik. Finally, he went to Vienna for a short period to work at an iron construction company. In 1871, at the age of twenty-seven, Karl Benz joined August Ritter in launching the Iron Foundry and Mechanical Workshop in Mannheim, later renamed Factory for Machines for Sheet-metal Working. 

 Despite the business misfortunes, Karl Benz led in the development of new engines in the early factory he and his wife owned. To get more revenues, in 1878 he began to work on new patents. First, he concentrated all his efforts on creating a reliable petrol two-stroke engine. Benz finished his two-stroke engine on December 31, 1878, New Year’s Eve, and was granted a patent for it in 1879.

 Karl Benz showed his real genius, however, through his successive inventions registered while designing what would become the production standard for his two-stroke engine. Benz soon patented the speed regulation system, the ignition using sparks with battery, the spark plug, the carburetor, the clutch, the gear shift, and the water radiator.

 Benz’s lifelong hobby brought him to a bicycle repair shop in Mannheim owned by Max Rose and Friedrich Wilhelm Eßlinger. In 1883, the three founded a new company producing industrial machines: Benz & Company Rheinische Gasmotoren-Fabrik, usually referred to as, Benz & Cie. Quickly growing to twenty-five employees, it soon began to produce static gas engines as well. The success of the company gave Benz the opportunity to indulge in his old passion of designing a horseless carriage. Based on his experience with, and fondness for, bicycles, he used similar technology when he created an automobile. 

 It featured wire wheels (unlike carriages’ wooden ones) with a four-stroke engine of his own design between the rear wheels, with a very advanced coil ignition and evaporative cooling rather than a radiator. Power was transmitted by means of two roller chains to the rear axle. Karl Benz finished his creation in 1885 and named it the Benz Patent Motorwagen. 

 It was the first automobile entirely designed as such to generate its own power, not simply a motorized-stage coach or horse carriage, which is why Karl Benz was granted his patent and is regarded as its inventor. The Motorwagen was patented on January 29, 1886 as DRP-37435: “automobile fueled by gas”. Benz began to sell the vehicle (advertising it as the Benz Patent Motorwagen) in the late summer of 1888, making it the first commercially available automobile in history. After Bertha Benz made her famous trip driving one of the vehicles a great distance and suggested to her husband the addition of another gear; the vehicle was then equipped with gear. 

 During the last years of the nineteenth century, Benz was the largest automobile company in the world with 572 units produced in 1899. In 1895, Benz designed the first truck in history, with some of the units later modified by the first motor bus company: the Netphener, becoming the first motor buses in history. In 1896, Karl Benz was granted a patent for his design of the first flat engine. It had horizontally opposed pistons, a design in which the corresponding pistons reach top dead centre simultaneously, thus balancing each other with respect to momentum. 

On April 4, 1929, Karl Benz died at home in Ladenburg at the age of eighty-four from a bronchial inflammation. The Benz home now has been designated as historic and is used as a scientific meeting facility for a nonprofit foundation, the Gottlieb Daimler and Karl Benz Foundation, that honors both Bertha and Karl Benz for their roles in the history of automobiles.

We need more lions like HIM who believe in self reliance and self sufficiency !!!

Lala Lajpat Rai was popularly known as Punjab Kesari meaning The Lion of Punjab also known as “Sher-E- Punjab” in Hindi.  He was also associated with activities of Punjab National Bank and Lakshmi Insurance Company in their early stages. He was part of the Lal Bal Pal trio. The word ‘Lala‘ is an honorific, applied to prominent men of the time.

Lajpat Rai was born in Dhudike which is now in Moga district, Punjab on 28 January 1865. His father, Radha Krishan, was an Urdu teacher. He was a devotee of Arya Samaj and was editor of Arya Gazette, which he set up during his student time. 

He advocated the Swadeshi movement involving theboycott of all imported items and the use of Indian-made goods in 1907. 

The last years of the nineteenth century, saw a radical sensibility emerge among some Indian Intellectuals. This position burst onto the national all-India scene in 1905 with the Swadeshi movement – the term is usually rendered as “self reliance” or “self sufficiency”.

He sustained serious injuries by the police when leading a non-violent protest againstthe Simon Commission and died less than three weeks later. His death anniversary (November 17) is one of several days celebrated as Martyrs’ Day in India.

He initiated the discussion on the partition of Punjab. Writing in The Tribune in November-December 1924, he penned,

“My suggestion is that the Punjab should be partitioned into two provinces, the Western Punjab with a large Muslim majority to be [a] Muslim-governed province; the Eastern Punjab with a large Hindu-Sikh majority to be [a] non-Muslim-governed province.” 

He also proposed Muslim provinces to be set up in the North West Frontier Province, Sindh and East Bengal.

‘The Lala Lajpat Rai Trust’ was formed in 1959 on the eve of his Centenary Birth Celebration, to promote education. The trust was founded by a group of Punjabi philanthropists (including R.P Gupta and B.M Grover) who have settled and prospered in the Indian State of Maharashtra.

The Lala Lajpat Rai University of Veterinary & Animal Sciences, in Hisar, Haryana, is a state university was created in memory of Lajpat Rai. A statue of Lajpat Rai stands at the central square in Shimla, India (having been originally erected in Lahore and moved to Shimla in 1948).

Lala Lajpat Rai Hall of Residence at Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT) in Kanpur and Kharagpur; as well as the Lala Lajpat Rai Institute of Engineering and Technology(LLRIET), Moga, are named in his honor. Also many institutes, schools and libraries in his hometown of Jagraon, district Ludhiana are named after him.

The bus terminus in Jagraon, Punjab, India is named after Lala Lajpat Rai. Lala Lajpat Rai Hospital, Kanpur is also named in his honor. The Lala Lajpat Rai Institute of Management is a business school in Mumbai.

The society that has shown the world through fresh eyes; has amazing perspective depicted through NGC !!!

The National Geographic Society (NGS), headquartered in Washington, D.C. in the United States, is one of the largest non-profit scientific and educational institutions in the world. The National Geographic Society began as a club for an elite group of academics and wealthy patrons interested in travel. On January 13, 1888, 33 explorers and scientists gathered at the Cosmos Club, a private club then located on Lafayette Square in Washington, D.C., to organize “a society for the increase and diffusion of geographical knowledge.” After preparing a constitution and a plan of organization, the National Geographic Society was incorporated two weeks later on January 27.In 2004, the National Geographic Headquarters in Washington, D.C. was one of the first buildings to receive a “Green” certification from Global Green USA. The National Geographic received the prestigious Prince of Asturias Award for Communications and Humanity in October 2006 in Oviedo, Spain. 

 Its interests include geographyarchaeology and natural science, the promotion of environmental and historical conservation, and the study of world culture and historyThe National Geographic Society’s historical mission is “to increase and diffuse geographic knowledge while promoting the conservation of the world’s cultural, historical, and natural resources. ” Its purpose is to inspire people to care about their planet, according to John M. Fahey, Jr., President and CEO since March 1998 and Chairman since January 2010. The Society is governed by a Board of Trustees whose 22 members include distinguished educators, business executives, former government officials, and conservationists. The organization sponsors and funds scientific research and exploration. The Society publishes an official journal, National Geographic Magazine, in 34 languages. It also publishes other magazines, books, school products, maps, other publications, and web and film products in numerous languages and countries. Its educational foundation gives grants to education organizations and individuals to improve geography education. Its Committee for Research and Exploration, which has given grants for scientific research for most of the Society’s history, recently awarded its 10,000th such grant. 

Its various media properties reach about 360 million people monthly. National Geographic maintains a museum for the public in its Washington, D.C., headquarters. It has helped to sponsor popular traveling exhibits, such as an early 2010s “King Tut” exhibit featuring magnificent artifacts from the tomb of the young Egyptian Pharaoh; “The Cultural Treasures of Afghanistan” which opened in May 2008 and traveled to other cities for 18 months; and an exhibition of China’s Terracotta Warriors in its Washington headquarters in 2009–10. In November 2008, National Geographic opened a major retail store in London. 

The National Geographic Magazine, later shortened to National Geographic, published its first issue (October 1888) nine months after the Society was founded as the Society’s official journal, a benefit for joining the tax exempt National Geographic Society. The magazine contains articles about geography, popular science, world history, culture, current events and photography of places and things all over the world and universe. The National Geographic magazine is currently published in 32 language editions in many countries around the world. 

 In addition to its flagship magazine, the Society publishes six other periodicals in the United States:

  • National Geographic Kids: launched in 1975 as National Geographic World, it adopted its current name in 2001.There are also currently 18 local language editions of NG Kids
  • National Geographic Little Kids: for children aged 3–6
  • National Geographic Traveler: launched in 1984. There are 15 local-language editions of NG Traveler.
  • National Geographic Adventure: launched in 1999
  • National Geographic Explorer: classroom magazine launched in 2001.
  • National Geographic Green Guide: Launched in 2003, tips to consumers of how to live a “greener” life.
  • Glimpse Magazine (in association with National Geographic)
  • National Geographic Exploring History, which made its debut in Fall, 2011
  • Treasures of the Earth a collection about minerals and gemstones

The Society has published mapsatlases, filmstrips, and numerous books. It also lends its license to other publishers, for example to Thames & Kosmos for a line of science kits. In October 2007, National Geographic created a new Global Media group composed of its magazine, book publishing, television, film, music, radio, digital media and maps units. 

Programs by the National Geographic Society are also broadcast on television. National Geographic television specials as well as television series have been aired on PBS and other networks in the United States and globally for many years. The Geographic series in the U.S. started on CBS in 1964, moved to ABC in 1973 and shifted to PBS (produced by WQED, Pittsburgh) in 1975. National Geographic Channel, launched in January 2001, is a joint venture of National Geographic Television & Film and Fox Cable Networks. It has featured stories on numerous scientific figures such as Louis LeakeyJacques Cousteau, or Jane Goodall that not only featured their work but helped make them world-famous and accessible to millions. The National Geographic Channel has begun to launch a number of sub-branded channels in international markets, such as Nat Geo WildNat Geo AdventureNat Geo Junior, and Nat Geo Music.

National Geographic Films, a wholly owned taxable subsidiary of the National Geographic Society, has also produced a feature film based on the diary of a Russian submarine commander starring Harrison Ford in K-19: The Widowmaker, and most recently retooling a French-made documentary for U.S. distribution with a new score and script narrated by Morgan Freeman called March of the Penguins, whichreceived an Academy Award for the Best Documentary in 2006. National Geographic Films launched a new feature film in July 2007 called Arctic Tale, featuring the story of two families of walrus and polar bears.