Nicolas Leblanc - Research Article from Science and Its Times

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Nicolas Leblanc

1742?-1806

French Surgeon and Chemist

Although trained as a physician and surgeon, Nicolas Leblanc is best known for his discoveries as an industrial chemist. In this role, he developed the Leblanc process of making soda ash (sodium carbonate) from common salt. Because of the wide variety of uses for soda ash, including making soap, glass, paper, and more, this became one of the most important chemical processing innovations of the eighteenth century.

Nicolas Leblanc was the son of an iron works director, probably born in 1742. He attended medical school, earning sufficient distinction to be named the private physician to the Duke d'Orleans at the age of 38. Intrigued by a competition sponsored by the French Academy in 1775, Leblanc became interested in the problem of making soda ash from common salt. At that time, the only source of this important chemical was by extracting it laboriously from wood...

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This section contains 600 words
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Buy the Nicolas Leblanc Encyclopedia Article
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