Arbuzov, Aleksandr

Arbuzov, Aleksandr Erminingel’dovich


Born Aug. 30 (Sept. 11), 1877, in the village of Arbuzovo-Baran in Kazan Province; died Jan. 22, 1968, in Kazan. Soviet organic chemist. Academician of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR (1942; corresponding member, 1932). Hero of Socialist Labor (1957).

A student of A. M. Zaitsev, Arbuzov graduated from the University of Kazan in 1900 and was professor there from 1911 to 1930. In 1930 he became a professor at the Kazan Institute of Chemical Technology. Between 1945 and 1963 he was chairman of the Kazan branch of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR. In his master’s dissertation On theStructure of Phosphorous Acid and its Derivatives (1905), Arbuzov determined the structure of the acid and its esters and discovered the rearrangement of the acid’s intermediate esters. This rearrangement, which received the name Arbuzov reaction, is one of the most important methods for synthesizing organic phosphorous compounds. In his doctor’s dissertation, On Phenomena of Catalysis in the Field of Conversion of Some Phosphorus Compounds (1915), Arbuzov extended his ideas to esters of phenylphos-phinic and other acids and also showed the unity between the forces accelerating the catalytic isomerization processes and the forces affecting the rates of conventional chemical reactions. Arbuzov’s views are corroborated by the current theory of homogeneous catalysis. Arbuzov devoted a series of studies to the tautomerism of dialkyl esters of phosphorous acid and reactions of their metal derivatives. Studying these compounds, Arbuzov, together with B. A. Arbuzov, discovered a new method of obtaining free radicals of the triarylmethyl series. Arbuzov conducted studies on the theory of tapping and draining resins from conifers. Arbuzov established the presence of a high pressure of 0.2–0.3 meganewtons per m2 (2–3 kilograms-force per cm2) in the resin ducts of these plants. He developed a technique for collecting the sap without losing the volatile constituents, which aided the rapid growth of the resin industry in the USSR. Arbuzov’s works on the history of chemistry, showing the scientific contribution of Russian chemists, are valuable. Arbuzov was a deputy to the second through sixth convocations of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR. A recipient of the State Prize of the USSR in 1943 and 1947, he was awarded five Orders of Lenin, the Order of the Red Banner of Labor, and various medals.


Izbrannye trudy. Moscow, 1952.
“O svobodnykh radikalakh.” Uspekhi khimii, 1932, vol. 1, issues 2–3.
Kratkii ocherk razvitiia organicheskoi khimii ν Rossii. Moscow-Leningrad, 1948.
M. V. Lomonosov—velikii russkii uchenyi-khimik. Moscow, 1945.
A. M. Butlerov—velikii russkii khimik. Moscow, 1949.


Bogoiavlenskii, A. F., and N. N. Aksenov. Aleksandr Erminingel’dovich Arbuzov. Kazan, 1946.
Kamai, G. Kh. “Shkola A. E. Arbuzova, ee mesto ν sovetskoi khimicheskoi nauke.” Vestnik vysshei shkoly, 1948, no. 2.
Aleksandr Erminingel’dovich Arbuzov. (AN SSSR: Materialy k biobibliographii uchenykh SSSR: Ser. khimicheskikh nauk, vol. 12.) Moscow-Leningrad, 1949.
Rostovskii, E. N. “A. E. Arbuzov.” Zhurnal prikladnoi khimii, 1963, vol. 36, issue 1.