Enriching the Earth Fritz Haber, Carl Bosch, and the Transformation of World Food Production

ISBN-10: 0262693135

ISBN-13: 9780262693134

Edition: 2004

Authors: Vaclav Smil

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The industrial synthesis of ammonia from nitrogen and hydrogen has been of fundamental importance in the modern world. This book looks at the discovery of ammonia synthesis by Fritz Haber, the role of the nitrogen nutrient in crop production and the emergence of the nitrogen fertilizer industry.
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Book details

List price: $35.00
Copyright year: 2004
Publisher: MIT Press
Publication date: 2/27/2004
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 358
Size: 6.75" wide x 8.50" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 1.320
Language: English

Robert Pollin is Professor of Economics and Codirector of the Political Economy Research Institute at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He has served as a consultant on energy and the economy for a wide range of organizations and institutions, including the U.S. Department of Energy, the International Labour Organization, the United Nations Industrial Development Program (UNIDO), and numerous non-governmental organizations. He is author of Back to Full Employment (MIT Press), also in the Boston Review series, and Contours of Descent: U.S. Economic Fractures and the Landscape of Austerity.Vaclav Smil is a Distinguished Professor Emeritus at the University of Manitoba. He is the author of more than thirty books, including <I>Harvesting the Biosphere: What We Have Taken from Nature</I> and, most recently, <I>Made in the USA: The Rise and Retreat of American Manufacturing,</I> both published by the MIT Press. In 2010 he was named by <I>Foreign Policy</I> as one of the Top 100 Global Thinkers. In 2013 Bill Gates wrote on his website that "there is no author whose books I look forward to more than Vaclav Smil."

Transforming the World
Nitrogen in Agriculture: Discovering the Basics
Discovering Nitrogen
Nitrogen in Crop Production
Nitrogen and Legumes
Completing the Nitrogen Cycle
Traditional Sources of Nitrogen: Preindustrial Agricultures
Recycling of Organic Matter
Farmyard Manures
Cultivation of Legumes
Nitrogen Balances in Traditional Farming
Limits to Recycling and Legume Cultivation
New Sources of the Nutrient: Searching for Fixed Nitrogen
Sodium Nitrate
By-product Ammonia from Coking
Synthesis of Cyanamide
Electric Arc Process
Plant Nutrients and Future Food Supply
A Brilliant Discovery: Fritz Haber's Synthesis of Ammonia
Haber's Predecessors
Fritz Haber
Haber's First Experiments with Ammonia
Nernst and Haber
BASF and Haber
High-Pressure Catalytic Synthesis
Creating an Industry: Carl Bosch and BASF
Carl Bosch
Designing High-Pressure Converters
Finding New Catalysts
Producing the Feedstocks and Oxidizing Ammonia
The First Ammonia Plant at Oppau
Ammonia Synthesis for War
Evolution of Ammonia Synthesis: Diffusion and Innovation
Slow Diffusion of Ammonia Production: 1918-1950
Expansion and Changes Since 1950
Natural Gas-Based Ammonia Synthesis
Single-Train Plants with Centrifugal Compressors
Continuing Innovation
Synthetic Fertilizers: Varieties and Applications
Nitrogen Fertilizers
Fertilizer Applications: Global Views
Fertilizer Nitrogen in Global Crop Production
Regional and National Perspectives
The Most Productive Agroecosystems
Our Dependence on Nitrogen: Agricultures and Populations
How Many People Does Fertilizer Nitrogen Feed?
Human Protein Requirements
Nitrogen in U.S. Agriculture
Nitrogen in Chinese Farming
Growing Dependence during the Twenty-first Century
Consequences of the Dependence: Human Interference in Nitrogen's Biospheric Cycle
Intensifying the Global Cycling of Nitrogen
What Happens to Fertilizer Nitrogen
Nitrogen Losses in Modern Farming
Excess Nitrogen and Human Health
Nitrogen and Natural Ecosystems
Nitrogen and Civilization: Managing the Nitrogen Cycle
What Has Been Accomplished
More Efficient Fertilizing
Stabilized Populations
Rational Diets
A Long View
Name Index
Subject Index
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