All You Need To Know About Jan Ingenhousz

Who has photosynthesis discovered? Not many learn. Not many know. The name of Jan IngenHousz was forgotten, during the days his life and his works disappeared. However, science is shown in action in the tale of his scientific effort. It not only opens up a revealed chapter of science history, but it is also a perfect episode (as under investigation) in science history, capable of helping shine light upon technology creation materials and processes.

Born in Breda, the Netherlands on 8 December 1730, Jan Ingenhousz died in Bowood, Wiltshire, Great Britain on 7 September 1799. British Dutch-born physician and physicist most notable for his photo-synthesis observation, through which green plants absorb carbon dioxide in sunlight and emit oxygen.

Jan Ingenhousz Biography

After studying medicine at the University of Louvain, Jan Ingenhousz started his career as a physician. He was particularly interested in PMI–the predecessor to current vaccines. Physicians then inserted into their patients an infectious pox pustule to keep their illness from arising.

Thousands of people were inoculated against the disease in London by Jan Ingenhousz. Eventually, he became so eligible to prescribe inoculations that Empress Maria Theresa of Austria was requested to handle him. He also became her doctor. Finally, the physicist went back to London to make his most successful observation.

A Famous Discovery Of Photosynthesis

Ingenhousz was interested early in gases and became interested in photosynthesis. Both the disappearance of gas and the production of oxygen during photosynthesis were shown by his work results. Ingenhousz disproved the belief that energy comes from water, arguing that the fuel used by plants comes from the carbon dioxide in the air, by creating a connection between photosynthesis and plant breathing. He also showed that only green leaves can be photosynthesized to purify the air.

The Dutch scientist Jan Ingenhousz studied photosynthesis–how light is converted into energy by plants. Chlorophyll absorbs light and uses them in plant cells to transform carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and water into sugars consumed by plants for energy. As a byproduct of the entire cycle, the cells release oxygen. 

Prior research carried out by the English pharmacist Joseph Priestley has shown that plants produce and ingest atmospheric oxygen, and Ingenhousz carried out further studies on the physiology of plants in 1771 after consulting with Priestley. He saw green plants releasing oxygen bubbles in the presence of the sun, but when it was dark, the bubbles stopped, so the plants started to emit carbon dioxide. Ingenhousz concluded that the light needed to take these steps. He also discovered that plants provide much more oxygen than carbon dioxide so that the benefits of greeneries for air purification are identified.

Experiments in oxygen plant production were undertaken by Ingenhousz in 1778. He proved that plants ‘ green leaves must be subjected to sufficient sunshine to produce oxygen. From this point, he was able to counter his contemporary chemists ‘ claims and statements regarding the oxygen supply. Ingenhousz started the research on plant respiration by implementing many of the techniques developed by Priestley

Jan Ingenhousz

Priestley also developed an oxygen detection device known as an eudiometer. A closed vessel in which water was already present was injected with nitric oxide. A reaction between nitric oxide and oxygen would then occur in water and produce water-soluble nitrous dioxide. The oxygen concentration could, therefore, be determined in the water by watching the temperature increase in the tank. Ingenhousz has shown with this method that plants require light to cleanse the air. He concluded in the presence of light that all the plants have the power to correct filthy air in a matter of hours, not suited to breathing, but only in clear light or in the light of the sunglass.

Other Discoveries

The prolific scientist even tested for the first time, by immersing it into the wax and seeing what amount heat metal rods could perform. Through this process, he discovered that silver is one of the best metals for heat and one of the worst. He also contributed to improving the system to produce large quantities of static power. 

Ingenhousz undertook important particle experiments utilizing algae cells. His study of algae prompted him to make his first findings of what would eventually become recognized as Brown’s Movement. Ingenhousz was also the first in microscopic lenses to apply thin-glass covers for fluid preparedness.

Effect Of His Discoveries On The History

The observation by Jan Ingenhousz opened the way for a deeper understanding of the relationship between plants and their climate. For example, Jean Senebier, Swiss scientist, showed in 1796 that oxygen is the “goodness” in which plants emit and carbon dioxide the’ damage’ that is omitted. In the 1840s the German chemist Julius Robert Mayer indicated that plants should turn light energy into chemical energy, rather than create a new source through photosynthesis.

Some scientists are currently trying to use the discoveries of these centuries to address modern problems, such as climate change. For example, researchers at the University of California Berkeley are trying to take artificial photosynthesis before reaching the atmosphere to detect carbon dioxide emissions.


Jan Ingenhousz is also known as the Father of Photosynthesis. As the studies of medicine were not limited to Ingenhousz, and the secrets of photosynthesis were finally unraveled by him. It was Ingenhousz who first saw that plants produce oxygen when exposed to light, while already aware that plants interact with atmospheric gases–he was tipped to a photosynthesis procedure whereby plants harness light to turn water and carbon dioxide into sugar, which plants use as energy, and oxygen which is the filling air we inhale. 

Ingenhousz also contributes with some of his day’s science lights, including Benjamin Franklin and Henry Cavendish, to the studying of power, thermal conductivity and particle movements. But, you should thank Jan Ingenhousz for encouraging us to realize how plants around us function, whether you are bent on a biology schoolbook or love a nice day in the garden.

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