Ovtsyn, Ivan

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Ovtsyn, Ivan Ivanovich


Dates of birth and death unknown. Russian self-educated inventor.

Ovtsyn was the first in Russia to invent an apparatus for the dry distillation of wood that utilized all the distillates. He began constructing his device in October 1823 in St. Petersburg (near Okhta) and completed it in the beginning of 1824. Earlier devices, such as that of the French engineer P. Lebon, recovered either pitch and resin alone or illuminating gas alone, while Ovtsyn’s device also obtained acetic acid. Apparently, the manufacture of turpentine by the direct dry distillation of wood was begun in Russia after Ovtsyn’s successful experiments.


“Ugleobzhigatel’naia pech’, na osnovanii Termolampa ustroennaia na Okhte.” Otechestvennye zapiski, 1824, part 17, no. 43, pp. 480–84.
Luk’ianov, P. M. Istoriia khimicheskikh promyslov i khimicheskoi promyshlennostiRossiido kontsa 19 v., vol. 3. Moscow, 1951. Pages 516, 540.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.