D.I. Mendeleev, metrology and industrial development of Russia in late XIX – early XX century (unknown Mendeleev)

Elena Ginak , D.I. Mendeleyev Institute for Metrology (VNIIM), St. Petersburg, Russia (E.B.Ginak@vniim.ru)
Michael Okrepilov, D.I. Mendeleyev Institute for Metrology (VNIIM), St. Petersburg, Russia
A. Pronin, D.I. Mendeleyev Institute for Metrology (VNIIM), St. Petersburg, Russia

The Russian scientist D.I. Mendeleev is the widely known as a brilliant chemist, creator of the Periodic System of Chemical Elements. The World celebrates in 2019 already 150 years to this System. However, D.I. Mendeleev was also a talented physicist, researcher in the field of metrology, hydrodynamics, geology, chemical technology, connoisseur of industry issues, original thinker and statesman.

In 1892, D.I. Mendeleev has established the first metrological institution of Russia – the Main Chamber of Weights and Measures. Industrial management in Russia in that period was supervised by the Ministry of Finance. The Minister of Finance, S.Yu. Witte, appreciated deeply activities of D.I. Mendeleev as a scientist having a rich practical experience, and used his assistance in resolving problems of national importance: setting customs tariffs, study of oil, development of chemical and mining industries. D.I. Mendeleev took part also in decisions related to national and international trade. One of the conditions for successful development of industry and economy of a nation and its integration in the international trade is measurement traceability, increasing reliability of quality characteristics of the goods. The reform of metrology by D.I. Mendeleyev in Russia was aimed at this important national task.

The functions of the Main Chamber of Weights and Measures in the field of physico-chemical measurements are continued now by the D.I. Mendeleev’ Institute for Metrology in St. Petersburg.

Short Biography of Presenting Author

Dr. Elena Ginak is Head of Metrology Museum hosted by the D.I. Mendeleyev Institute for Metrology (VNIIM), St. Petersburg, Russia, since 1991. She is PhD in History of Science, graduated from St. Petersburg State University. Dr. Ginak is the author of 2 monographs, and more than 80 articles, including 3 papers for encyclopedias. She was a founder of the exposition at the Museum of the History at the Metrological Center “Test-St. Petersburg” (2000). Dr. Ginak took part in about 30 mass-media projects (films, TV and radio programs) dedicated to the history of metrology and to the life and work of D.I. Mendeleyev. She developed and organized more than 50 exhibitions on the history of metrology.

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