Alfred Nobel, Swedish chemist

Alfred Nobel, Swedish chemist

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Credit: COLLECTION ABECASIS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Alfred Nobel (1833-1896). 1897 illustration of the Swedish chemist and inventor Alfred Bernhard Nobel. Working for his father, Nobel studied explosives like nitroglycerin, and discovered ways to make them safer to use. In 1867, he patented dynamite (a mixture of nitroglycerine and an inert clay). Nobel's patents made him very wealthy. When he died in 1896, his will directed that the bulk of his fortune be used to set up the Nobel Prizes.

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