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The Alchemy of Air: A Jewish Genius, a Doomed Tycoon, and the Scientific… (edition 2008)
by Thomas Hager
The Alchemy of Air: A Jewish Genius, a Doomed Tycoon, and the Scientific Discovery That Fed the World but Fueled the Rise of Hitler by Thomas Hager
Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0307351793, Paperback)Tragic genius, cutting-edge science, and the discovery that changed billions of lives–including your own.
At the dawn of the twentieth century, humanity was facing global disaster: Mass starvation was about to become a reality. A call went out to the world’s scientists to find a solution.
This is the story of the two men who found it: brilliant, self-important Fritz Haber and reclusive, alcoholic Carl Bosch. Together they discovered a way to make bread out of air, built city-sized factories, and saved millions of lives.
But their epochal triumph came at a price we are still paying. The Haber-Bosch process was also used to make the gunpowder and explosives that killed millions during the two world wars. Both men were vilified during their lives; both, disillusioned and disgraced, died tragically.
The Alchemy of Air is the extraordinary, previously untold story of a discovery that changed the way we grow food and the way we make war–and that promises to continue shaping our lives in fundamental and dramatic ways.
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:48 -0400)
The extraordinary, previously untold story of two master scientists, enormously gifted, fatally flawed men who found the solution to global starvation. Together they discovered a way to make bread out of air, built city-sized factories, controlled world markets, and saved millions of lives. Their invention continues to feed us today; without it, more than two billion people would starve.
(summary from another edition)