The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 1912
Born: 6 May 1871, Cherbourg, France
Died: 13 December 1935, Lyon, France
Affiliation at the time of the award: Nancy University, Nancy, France
Prize motivation: "for the discovery of the so-called Grignard reagent, which in recent years has greatly advanced the progress of organic chemistry."
Prize share: 1/2
Nature is full of organic substances - a large and varied quantity of chemical compounds that contain the element carbon. Combining - synthesizing - organic substances by chemical means is important in both scientific and industrial contexts. In 1900 Victor Grignard developed a method for combining more basic organic compounds into more complex ones by causing carbon atoms to be bound to one another. The method uses magnesium as a catalyst - a substance that facilitates the process without being integrated into the final product.