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Robert Bunsen
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Robert Wilhelm Eberhard Bunsen

(1811-03-30)30 March 1811
Göttingen, Westphalia, Rhine Confederation (now Germany)
Died 16 August 1899(1899-08-16) (aged 88)
Alma mater University of Göttingen
Known for Discovery of cacodyl radical; discoveries of caesium and rubidium. Invention of the Bunsen burner; carbon-zinc electrochemical cell; methods of gas analysis; development of spectrochemical analysis
  • Copley medal (1860)
  • Davy Medal (1877)
  • Albert Medal (1898)
Scientific career
Doctoral advisor Friedrich Stromeyer
Doctoral students
  • Adolf von Baeyer
  • Fritz Haber
  • Philipp Lenard
  • Georg Ludwig Carius
  • Hermann Kolbe
  • Adolf Lieben
  • Carl Friedrich Wilhelm Ludwig
  • Viktor Meyer
  • Friedrich Konrad Beilstein
  • Henry Enfield Roscoe
  • John Tyndall
  • Edward Frankland
  • Thomas Edward Thorpe
  • Francis Robert Japp
Other notable students Dmitri Mendeleev

Robert Wilhelm Eberhard Bunsen (31 March 1811 – 16 August 1899) was a German chemist. He improved the bunsen burner which now has his name. It was invented by Michael Faraday.

Much more important was the work he did which led to spectroscopy. Together with Gustav Kirchhoff, he developed a method of using the spectrum of light to identify the composition of solids,liquids or gases. Spectroscopy originated through the study of visible light dispersed according to its wavelength, for example, by a prism. Bunsen found the elements caesium and rubidium with his spectroscope.

In 1841, Bunsen developed the Bunsen cell, by improving the galvanic cell William Grove had developed in 1839.

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