Born August 27 1884 – Died August 28 1940
Process of Producing Ammonia
Patent No. 990,191
Karl Bosch transformed global agriculture by advancing the Haber process for
producing ammonia, making it commercially practical to produce large
quantities of the compound. The Haber-Bosch process remains an industry
standard for the mass production of ammonia used for manufacturing
Using principles from Fritz Haber’s discovery, Bosch devised a method
for separating large quantities of hydrogen from a hydrogen-carbon monoxide
mixture. In 1909, under Bosch's leadership, BASF acquired the patent rights
for Fritz Haber's ammonia process and began developing the equipment and
refining the process needed for mass production.
Two years later, BASF started producing commercial quantities of ammonia.
During World War I, BASF expanded its production facilities, and by 1918
Germany was generating more than 200,000 tons of synthetic ammonia annually
for use in fertilizers and explosives.
Bosch was born in Cologne, Germany. He studied chemical engineering at the
Technical University in Charlottenburg, Germany
before receiving his Ph.D. from the University of Leipzig in 1898. Bosch won
the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1931 for his integral part in establishing
the ammonia industry.