Alfred Nobel

Born: 1833
Birthplace: Stockholm

Improved explosive compound: dynamite—Accidents in the manufacturing and handling of nitroglycerin made Nobel aware of its danger in the fluid state. After much experimenting, he invented dynamite in 1866—nitroglycerine absorbed by a very porous dynamite clay. Easily handled, solid, and malleable, nitroglycerine was transformed into a useful explosive making mining, railroad building, and other construction safer, more efficient, and cheaper. Upon his death, he willed the bulk of his fortune to a foundation that would award prizes annually for advancements in physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature, and peace. (1998)

Died: 1896
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