Science

Sir William Henry Perkin dedicated a Google doodle on his birth anniversary

Sir William Henry Perkin dedicated a Google doodle on his birth anniversary

Google Doodle is remembering British chemist Sir William Henry Perkin with a bright coloured sketch doodle on his 180th birthday.

In 1856 while carrying out a further experiments in his makeshift laboratory at his home in Cable Street, London, Perkin discovered that aniline, an cheap coal tar waste product, could be used to produce a substance with a deep purple colour when combined with alcohol.

Queen Victoria herself wore a mauveine-dyed gown to the Royal Exhibition of 1862, making Perkin's invention a huge hit.

Perkin, known for giving birth to the modern chemical industry, did not stop with this discovery but went on researching to find other aniline dye colours and synthetic scents.

Perkin's first assignment, given to him by his superiors at the university, was to help discover how to synthesise quinine to combat malaria.

Perkin gained fame, popularity and wealth with this discovery in the manfacturing dye.




This was the ideal time for Perkin to have made his discovery and he went about getting his father to invest in his discovery, which caught on in Britain's booming textile industry right away.

Perkin sold the factory and retired at the age of 36, but he still continued to help discover a way to change the structure of organic compound on a molecular level.

The chemist had made the discovery in the midst of the Industrial Revolution and coal tar, the main source of his raw material, was being produced in large quantities as a waste product.

All three sons, William Jr, Arthur and Frederick, became chemists.

Perkin was knighted in 1906, on the 50th anniversary of his serendipitous discovery.

Sir William Henry Perkin passed away in 1907 after suffering from pneumonia and is buried in Harrow.