Published: Mon, March 12, 2018
IT&Software | By Alfonso Woods

Google honors chemist Sir William Henry Perkin with new Doodle

Google honors chemist Sir William Henry Perkin with new Doodle

The search engine and tech giant Google has honoured the British chemist Sir William Henry Perkin with a colourful sketch doodle on his 180th birthday. He is credited for discovering synthetic dye at a young age of 18 and to introduce brightly coloured clothing to the masses which has set the foundation for today's chemical and pharmaceutical industries. He called the substance mauveine or purple.

The Google doodle for Monday March 12, 2018 is dedicated to the brilliant scientist and east Londoner who changed the world with his incredible discovery back in 1856. At a young age of 15, his devotion to the subject got him admission into the Royal College of Chemistry. There Perkin started experimenting in synthesising quinine used in the treatment of malaria.

Search engine Google on Friday celebrated the life and works of Sir William Henry Perkin.

In 1856, Perkin carried out a series of experiments to manufacture quinine from aniline, an low-cost and readily available coal tar waste product, working in his makeshift laboratory at his home.

Purple clothing was very much in fashion during Perkin's happy discovery - but was previously too expensive for most people to buy and would also fade quickly.

A school founded in Perkin's name can be found in Greenford, Middlesex and the uniform is mauve in tribute to his eye-popping finding.

Perkin's timing was remarkable as the textile industry was at a high. England was then in the grip of the Industrial Revolution and coal tar - the major source of his raw material - was being produced in large quantities as a waste product.

At the time, all dyes used for colouring cloth were natural substances, many of which were expensive and labour-intensive to extract.

After making relative riches from manufacturing, Sir William Henry Perkin turn to researching and studying chemical processes and was knighted in 1906, 50 years after his accidental discovery.

The reach of today's Doodle is limited to the United States, west coast of South America, the UK and a few other European countries, India, Japan and Indonesia.

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