Google Doodle celebrates 98th birth anniversary of Japanese geochemist Katsuko Saruhashi

Her curiosity and knowledge urged Katsuko Sarahashi to cover some major milestones, a feat which was quite unheard of among the women of her generation.

On the 98th birth anniversary of renowned Japanese geochemist Dr Katsuko Saruhashi, Google Doodle has a young bespectacled Saruhashi in the backdrop of what looks like an ocean. She is known for her groundbreaking research which is known to have helped oceanographers immensely.

Katsuko. Google Doodle.

Katsuko Saruhashi. Google Doodle.

According to the Google Doodle, Saruhashi is known for her path-breaking work in chemistry. Her remarkable works include measuring the concentration of carbonic acid in water. This was measured based on its temperature, pH level and chlorinity. This method was named after her and is called the Saruhashi Table. It is used by oceanographers world over.

She is also known for developing a technique to trace the distance radioactive fallouts can traverse across oceans. In 1963, this was useful in bringing restrictions to the practice of oceanic nuclear experimentation.

Her journey in science began in school. During her childhood, when she was in primary school, Saruhashi while observing the raindrops sliding across the window wondered the reason behind raining. The burning curiosity and thirst for knowledge urged her to cover some major milestones, a feat which was quite unheard of among the women scientists of her generation.

In 1957, she became the first woman to earn a doctorate in Chemistry from the University of Tokyo. Later, in 1980 she became the first female scientist to be elected to the Science Council of Japan. Five years later, in 1985 she was coveted with the Miyake Prize in geochemistry, a first among women.

Meanwhile, in 1981, she introduced the Saruhashi Prize which honoured women for their distinguished research in science.

Saruhashi, known for her immense contribution to science, had once said, “There are many women who have the ability to become great scientists. I would like to see the day when women can contribute to science and technology on an equal footing with men.”

The spread of the Doodle is in India, Australia, Japan, North America, parts of South America, Sweden, Iceland, the UK and Serbia.

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