Ferdinand Reich

Ferdinand Reich ( born February 19, 1799 in Bernburg, † April 27, 1882 in Freiberg ) was a German chemist and physicist.


After his studies at the University of Leipzig and at the Mining Academy Freiberg ( under Abraham Gottlob Werner), he was an assistant in 1819 Freiberg metallurgy.

She then studied abroad in Göttingen (1822 ) and Paris (1823 /24); after that he worked as a supervisor at the Academy of Freiberg. In 1827 he became a professor of Physics and Assessor at Freiberger Oberhütte office. In 1860, he was appointed Oberbergrat; physics professor, he gave up in the same year.

1866 Ferdinand Reich retired. He died in 1882 in Freiberg.


Reich's most significant achievement was the spectroscopic investigation of black sphalerite, where he in 1863 together with Theodor Richter discovered the chemical element indium. The name of indium chose the discoverer because of the indigo blue spectral color.

His further research were extremely versatile: He published, for example, on temperature measurements in the mines of the Ore Mountains, examined the Hüttenrauch to toxins, led geomagnetic observations and case experiments to demonstrate the Earth's rotation.

Publications (selection)

  • Drop tests on the rotation of the earth employed on high Oberg Official arrangement in the Three Brothers bay near Freiberg ( 1830)
  • Observations on the temperature of the rock at various depths in the pits of the Saxon Ore Mountains in the years 1830-32 (1834 )
  • About the magnetic inclination to Freiberg (1834 )
  • Experiments on the mean density of the earth by means of the torsion balance (1838 )
  • About electric currents on veins. - In: Calendar for the Saxon mines and iron man. (1840 ) S- 1-2
  • Guide to the lectures on physics at the Mining Academy Freiberg (1852 )
  • Previous attempts to eliminate the harmful influence of the cabin smoke in the fiscal smelters to Freiberg. - In: Mining and Metallurgical newspaper. 17 (1858 ) pp. 165-168 and 173-176
  • Preliminary note on a new metal. - In: Journal of practical chemistry. 89 (1863 ) pp. 441-442
  • About the indium. - In: Journal of practical chemistry. 90 (1863 ) pp. 172-176 and 92 (1864 ) pp. 480-485