Arnold Orville Beckman Proposer of PH Meter
Arnold Orville Beckman Proposer of PH Meter

Biography of Arnold OrvilleĀ Beckman

Early Life

Arnold Orville Beckman PH meter inventor was born on 10 April, 1900 in Coolum, Illinois. His father was a blacksmith. The interest of Arnold Orville Beckman raised in chemistry when he found a textbook of chemistry in which many experiments were written. He used that book and started performing those experiments. On the other hand, he was also interested in music and used to play music often. In very young age, he made his own band and used to play piano in the silent movies which were played in local theatre.


He got admission in University of Illinois and got his graduation degree in chemical engineering in 1922 and the same year he earned his Masters degree in physical chemistry from the same university. In 1924, he started his PhD program at University of California but later on he quitted it and returned to New York for marriage. In 1928, he got his PhD degree in Photochemistry from Caltech. He joined this university as a faculty member and a teacher and he taught chemistry from 1929 to 1940.

Interest in Electronics

His interest in Electronics was growing day by day and his capability to design measuring instruments made him very popular and famous in his own department and university. He started the consulting work outside while working in the same university. He was very much interested in acidity and properties of a base. For this purpose he worked day and night and at last invented an Electronic PH meter to measure the PH of an acid or a base.

InventorĀ of PH Meter

He invented his first PH meter in 1935 which he named originally as acidometer at that time. His institute used techniques to promote acidometer to make it for common usage. He launched his own company and attached with it for almost 50 years. In this time span, he worked for his company in many ways. He invented Beckman DU Ultraviolet Spectrophoto meter in 1942. He made many developed and improved spectrophoto meters in upcoming days and made it a very common product at that time. He retired form his company in 1983 and started charity and social welfare work. He made many trusts and organizations which were working for the betterment of people and gave thousands of dollars for charity purposes.


This great man who contributed significantly and made many marvelous contributions to the music, chemistry and philanthropy died at Scripps Green Hospital, La Jolla, California on 18th May, 2004 in the age of 104 years.