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Dmitri Ivanovich Mendeleev

Introducing Dmitri Ivanovich Mendeleev, the inventor of the Periodic Table and beyond
by

Steve Rebollo

on 27 October 2015

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Transcript of Dmitri Ivanovich Mendeleev

Apart from the periodic table, Mendeleev was also interested in the interaction between molecules and he discovered the ‘critical point’ (the conditions beyond which a gas cannot be liquefied by pressure) independently of Thomas Andrews, the scientist traditionally credited with the discovery. Mendeleev was present in the petroleum and agriculture industries. He was made Director of the Bureau of Weights and Measures in 1893.
Mendeleev's Background
Mendeleev was born in Tobolsk, Siberia, on January 27, 1834. He was the youngest of seventeen children. His interest in mathematics and physics was evident in his childhood. His mother felt that he should have the best education possible since she foresaw his contributions to these subjects.
Breakthrough
Impact
¨He realized that the physical and chemical properties of elements were related to their atomic mass in a 'periodic' way, and arranged them so that groups of elements with similar properties fell into vertical columns in his table." When using this method there would often times be gaps in the rows. Other scientists would view this as problem but Mendeleev did not. He just thought that the elements had yet to be discovered. Him thinking in this different way is what allowed him to have a breakthrough because he did not let the missing elements hinder his process of inventing the periodic table.
Dmitri Ivanovich Mendeleev


Mendeleev is the founding father of the modern periodic table and of the periodic law (way the table is arranged). It is still in use today, with slight modifications to accommodate the new elements discovered and with the elements in order of atomic number. Through his table, he was able to predict the properties of missing elements well before they were observed. Furthermore, Russia's prestige increased due to his work.
Opposition
Other Contributions
Post Discovery
In 1880 fellow academics proposed him for the chair of chemical technology at the Imperial Academy of Sciences, but his candidacy was opposed by a number of influential individuals and ultimately rejected. He resigned from his university chair ten years later. His work was largely ignored at first, even by his Russian contemporaries. But as new elements were discovered (he accurately predicted their properties) and fit perfectly into the table, the periodic table became widely accepted.
The periodic table, possibly his own renowned discovery, had a rather obvious impact on the world. The periodic table set the foundation for chemistry as it helped explain the long-term mystery of atoms and helped organize the basis of the subject. Chemistry, the study of substances, basically has to deal with our origins. By discovering the periodic table, we were thus able to answer the question of where we came from. Chemistry also led to multiple technological advances such as the atom bomb and nuclear science.

Before Mendeleev, there have been small advancements in the organization of elements. However, these advancements were rudimentary and crude. These early chemists found patterns, but they often did not apply to the whole list of elements (there was no periodic table).

Chemistry before Mendeleev
¨Pleasures flit by - they are only for yourself; work leaves a mark of long lasting joy, work is for others.¨
-Dmitri I. Mendeleev
D.I. Mendeleev
Institute
for Metrology
¨Certain characteristic properties of elements can be foretold from their atomic weights.¨
¨We must expect the discovery of many as yet unknown elements-for example, elements analogous to aluminum and silicon- whose atomic weight would be between 65 and 75. ¨

Quotes
¨No one nor anything can silence me.¨
¨There is nothing in this world that I fear to say.¨
Quote
Full transcript