The Haber Process

Fritz Haber

Fritz Haber

It is thought that two in five people owe their existence to the discoveries made by one brilliant chemist. However despite this incredible discovery many people still call Fritz Haber a murderer.

Haber was responsible for inventing the process, which takes his name, for producing Ammonia, NH3 an essential chemical in the production of fertilisers, it is a great provider of Nitrogen.

See a previous post for more details of the Haber process

As a base it also reacts with acids to form a salt such as ammonium phosphate which is often used to add Nitrogen and Phosphorus to soils. (soils need nutrients often called NPK, or nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, fertilisers provide these nutrients)

Tonight on BBC radio 4 will be a programme looking at the life and work of Fritz Haber

Chris Bowlby’s The Chemist of Life and Death; Tuesday 12 April at 2100 BST and again on Wednesday 13 April at 1630

Also available on the BBC iPlayer