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Significant Scots
Thomas Graham


Graham, Thomas (b. 1805, Glasgow, Scotland d. 1869, Eng.), British chemist often referred to as "the father of colloid chemistry."

Educated in Scotland, Graham persisted in becoming a chemist, though his father disapproved and withdrew his support. He then made his living by writing and teaching. Graham's first important paper dealt with the diffusion of gases. He developed "Graham's law" of the diffusion rate of gases and also found that the relative rates of the effusion of gases are comparable to the diffusion rates

In 1835 he reported on the properties of the water of crystallization in hydrated salts; he also obtained definite compounds of salts and alcohol, the "alcoholates," analogues of the hydrates. In his final paper he described palladium hydride, the first known instance of a solid compound formed from a metal and a gas.

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