Clemens Alexander Winkler

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Winkler, Clemens Alexander


Born Dec. 26, 1838, in Freiberg; died Oct. 8, 1904, in Dresden. German chemist. Worked in chemical plants beginning in 1859; professor at the Mining Academy in Freiberg from 1873 through 1902.

In 1886, while investigating the composition of the mineral argyrodite, Winkler discovered a new element, which he called germanium. The properties of germanium coincided with striking accuracy with the properties of eka-silicon predicted in 1871 by D. I. Mendeleev on the basis of the periodic law. The discovery of germanium was a new and brilliant confirmation of the periodic law—Mendeleev called Winkler one of the corroborators of the law. In 1875, Winkler developed a commercial method of obtaining sulfur trioxide by the interaction of sulfur dioxide and oxygen upon heating in the presence of platinized asbestos, by which he laid the basis for the contact method of production of sulfuric acid.


“Mitteilungen über das Germanium.” Journal fur praktische Chemie, 1886, vol. 34, fasc. 4; 1887, vol. 36, fasc. 4.


Mendeleev, D. I. Izbr. soch, vol. 2. Leningrad, 1934.
Volkova, T. V. “Ukrepiteli periodicheskogo zakona (Pis’ma Lekok de Buabodrana, Vinklera, Nil’sona i Braunera D. I. Mendeleevu).” Uspekhi khimii, 1944, vol. 13, issue 4.
Clemens Winkler: Gedenkschrift zur 50. Wiederkehr seines Todestages. Berlin, 1954.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
A German chemist, Clemens Alexander Winkler (1838-1904), analyzed a silver ore and, when he had completed his work, found that the elements he had located added up to only 93 percent of the whole.