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MORLEY, Edward Williams, chemist, born in Newark, New Jersey, 29 January, 1838. He was graduated at Williams in 1860, and subsequently taught chemistry. In 1869 he was appointed professor of chemistry and geology in Western Reserve (now Adelbert) college, and in 1873 was called to fill a similar chair in Cleveland medical college, both of which places he now (1888) fills. His original work includes a series of measurements of the fineness of striation of all the diatoms on ten of Moller's diatomacean test-plates (1876), followed by a series of measurements prepared for the purpose of showing precision in the micrometric readings of graduations. In 1877-'8 he began the study of the cause of the variation of the amount of oxygen in the atmosphere, designing an apparatus for this, with which he made frequent analyses of air. The publication of similar results by foreign scientists' led to his devising improved apparatus for gas analysis. His results showed that Jolly's theory of the causes of variation of the amount of oxygen in the air was untenable, and indicated that air at an elevation above the earth's surface is poor in oxygen, and that when such air is brought down by currents, deficiency of oxygen is noted. During 1884 he was engaged with Albert A. Michelson (q. v.) in repeating the experiment of Fizeau on the effect of the motion of a transparent medium on the velocity of light, and more recently they have experimented with a view of testing Fresnel's explanation of astronomical aberration. Their most recent work in this direction has been the determining of a practical method of comparing the wave-lengths of sodium light with the meter more accurately than has hitherto been done; also a method of laying down on a bar of metal a desired number of such wave-lengths with an accuracy greater than that of a micrometric comparison of standards of lengths, so that the sodium wavelength may be made a natural standard of length. At present he is engaged in redetermining the atomic weight of oxygen. In 1877 he received the degree of M.D. from the Cleveland medical college, and in 1878 Ph.D. from the University of Wooster. Professor Morley has collected a unique chemical library, and has the most complete files of chemical journals in the United States. He is a member of scientific societies, and in 1883 was vice-president of the American association for the advancement of science, for the chemical section.
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