Baekeland, Leo Hendrik

Baekeland, Leo Hendrik

(bāk`lănd), 1863–1944, American chemist, b. Belgium, grad. Univ. of Ghent, 1882. In 1889 he emigrated to the United States. He founded (1893) and conducted, until 1899, when he sold the rights to Eastman, a company for producing a photographic paper of his own invention. In 1909 he announced his invention of BakeliteBakelite
[for its inventor, L. H. Baekeland], synthetic thermosetting resin. It has been widely used both alone, to form whole objects, and in combination with other materials, as a laminate or a surface coating.
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, the first important synthetic plastic, and from 1910 to 1939 he served as president of the Bakelite Corp. He wrote Some Aspects of Industrial Chemistry (1914).
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