Michael Faraday

Chemist / Physicist

Born: 22 September 1791
Died: 25 August 1867
Birthplace: Newington, Surrey, England
Best known as: Inventor of the first dynamo
Although he had little formal education, Michael Faraday went on to become one of the most influential scientists in the field of electricity. He spent his professional career in the laboratory of the Royal Institution in London (1813-62), where he got his start as an assistant in 1813 to Sir Humphry Davy. By 1825 he had worked his way up to being laboratory director, and in 1833 he was made a professor of chemistry. In the lab he had great success with electrochemistry, and he even has an electrical unit named after him (a faraday is an amount of electricity measured during electrolysis). Faraday built the first dynamo, a copper disk that rotated between the poles of a permanent magnet and produced an electromotive force (something that moves electricity). His work in electromagnetic induction led to the development of modern dynamos and generators. Faraday also discovered the compound benzene.

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