Swedish chemist of Hungarian origin who was born in Budapest and died in Freiburg im Breisgau. In 1926 he was Professor at the University of Freiburg in Breisgau. In 1944 he worked also as a teacher, at the Institute of organic chemistry of Stockholm.
He inquired about the mobility of ions and isotopes separation. He discovered that ordinary lead and radioactive are chemically inseparable. As a result, it is possible to mark minimum lead when mixed with something of radio-D, allowing you to take advantage of the fact that very small levels of any radioactive material can be easily reached with the help of a timer or using photographic techniques.
He obtained the radioactive isotope of potassium of mass 41. He made several discoveries: the use of isotopic indicators and the element number 72 of the periodic table, hafnium, zirconium minerals; the name of the element comes from the old name which took the city of Copenhagen, where it was found. For his work on isotopes as indicators for the study of the chemical and biological processes, was awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry in 1943. He also managed to follow the path of food inside living organisms, by marking them with such substances.
His main work on radioactive isotopes are reflected in several works, including radioactive indicators (1948) and Adventures in radioisotope research (adventures in the investigation of radioisotopes, 1962). In the same way that atoms for peace prize, was awarded to Niels Bohr, in 1958.