Fritz Raschig

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Fritz Raschig
Factory of the Keramische Werke Raschig AG (graphic, 1920s)

Fritz Raschig (born June 8, 1863 in Brandenburg an der Havel ; † February 4, 1928 in Duisburg ; full name: Friedrich August Raschig ) was a German chemist , entrepreneur and politician .

life and work

Fritz Raschig was the eldest of 13 children of bars fabrikanten August Raschig . His father came from an old drapery family from Jessen (Elster) and had founded his factory in the Neustadt of Brandenburg (Havel) in 1862 , which was continued by one of Raschig's brothers until at least the 1920s. Fritz Raschig developed a strong interest in the natural sciences early on, especially chemistry , so that his father even set up a small laboratory for him. The visit to the secondary school Saldria in Brandenburg an der Havel encouraged him in this, which later moved him to donate high-quality teaching materials. After graduating from high school in 1881, he studied chemistry at the University of Berlin , meanwhile a semester at the Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg . At Heidelberg University he was a student of the renowned chemist Robert Wilhelm Bunsen . In 1884 he was in Berlin with the theme "exposure to copper chlorides heavy metals" to Dr. phil. PhD . As a scientific assistant in Berlin from 1885 to 1887, Raschig wrote a widely acclaimed work "On the behavior of nitrous to sulphurous acid". He dealt with sulfur and saltpeter all his life.

After having worked for the Badische Anilin- und Sodafabrik ( BASF ) for years from 1887 (most recently as operations manager for the synthesis areas of benzoic acid , carbolic acid (phenol) and picric acid ), he founded the Chemische Fabrik Raschig GmbH named after him in 1891 , which is today is still based in Ludwigshafen- Mundenheim . He built this factory for the production of pure tar components, such as B. anthracene , naphthalene , crude carbolic acid (phenol) , toluene and benzene . During the fractionation he used a special filler that was patented under the name Raschig-Ring in 1914 and is known all over the world today. This development was previously kept secret in order to fully utilize the advantage of the pure preparation of the phenol on an industrial scale. After Fritz Raschig's death, the company was initially run by his two sons, Kurt Raschig and Dr. Claus Raschig continued, then by their sons Gerd (son of Kurt) and Friedrich Raschig (son of Claus). After Gerd Raschig's death, his community of heirs and Friedrich Raschig sold the company to the US PMC group PMC Global in 1996 .

Fritz Raschig donated 200,000 m² of land to the city of Ludwigshafen am Rhein for those returning from the war in 1916, which led to the founding of the Ludwigshafen Garden City . To this end, he also suggested the merger of the existing building cooperatives. The Raschigstrasse located there was named in his honor.

1917 awarded him the Technical University of Darmstadt , the honorary doctorate (as Dr.-Ing. E. h. ), In 1918 an honorary doctorate followed the Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg (as Dr. phil. Hc ). Raschig was involved in the association to protect the interests of the chemical industry in Germany . In 1926 he was elected a member of the Leopoldina , and in 1927 he was awarded the Liebig Medal of the Association of German Chemists .

Raschig's scientific achievements include:

  • the development and application of random packings for loose beds ("Raschig rings"),
  • the discovery of the uses of cresol ,
  • the development of para-chloro-meta-cresol (Raschit) to disinfectants,
  • the continuous tar distillation,
  • the Kiton method in road construction (tar + clay + water suspension),
  • the production of synthetic resins from phenol and formaldehyde (e.g. for billiard balls).

In order to secure the supply of raw tar, he acquired the tar distillation Chemische Fabrik Dr. Wirth, Waldthausen & Schulz in Werne near Bochum and had oil drilled in Krozingen in 1910/11 . During these boreholes, a carbonic acid source was discovered, which became the basis for the spa operation in this southern Baden town.


Raschig was also politically active and was a member of the Weimar National Assembly in 1919/20 . He later sat from December 1924 until his death as a member of the German Democratic Party in the German Reichstag in Berlin. In addition, he was a member of the Ludwigshafen city council from 1900 until his death.


  • Claus PriesnerRaschig, Fritz. In: New German Biography (NDB). Volume 21, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin 2003, ISBN 3-428-11202-4 , p. 158 f. ( Digitized version ).
  • Frank Dietrich: Fritz Raschig, a born Brandenburg inventor, entrepreneur and politician . In: Historischer Verein Brandenburg (Havel) eV (Hrsg.): 8th Annual Report 1999 , pp. 10–15.
  • Arthur Rosenheim: Fritz Raschig (June 8, 1863 - February 4, 1928) . In: Reports of the German Chemical Society , Volume 62, Number 11, pp. A109-A126.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Tar macadam . In: . Retrieved August 5, 2012.