An Appreciation of Arnold Beckman

Arnold Beckman How scientific instrumentation has expanded human vistas is well illustrated by the contributions of Galileo (telescope) and Leeuwenhoek (microscope). The capability for further and deeper observation these men bequeathed to us with their instruments is at least as important as their own notable scientific achievements. It is not given to 20th century folk, in an explosively more complex world, to occupy so many roles simultaneously. But in historical retrospection, the electron

Joshua Lederberg
Mar 5, 2000


Arnold Beckman
How scientific instrumentation has expanded human vistas is well illustrated by the contributions of Galileo (telescope) and Leeuwenhoek (microscope). The capability for further and deeper observation these men bequeathed to us with their instruments is at least as important as their own notable scientific achievements.

It is not given to 20th century folk, in an explosively more complex world, to occupy so many roles simultaneously. But in historical retrospection, the electronic and electromechanical tools that Arnold Beckman has invented, developed, and brought to market will be seen as invigorating the life sciences in much the same way as the predecessor optical instruments did in previous centuries.

How extraordinary that Beckman and his company brought into everyday use such a wide range of new sophistication in a single lifetime: the electronic pH meter, the spectrophotometers, the ultracentrifuges, the amino acid analyzers and peptide synthesizers, and the list goes on....

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