Robert Bosch life and biography

Robert Bosch picture, image, poster

Robert Bosch biography

Date of birth : 1861-09-23
Date of death : 1942-03-09
Birthplace : Albeck, Germany
Nationality : German
Category : Science and Technology
Last modified : 2011-09-28
Credited as : electrical engineer, electrical magneto, Bosch magneto

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Robert Bosch invented the electrical magneto, a device that both generates and distributes electric current, and with his business partner Siegmund Bergmann co-founded Robert Bosch GmbH in 1886. The company had modest success selling Bosch's magneto, and surged to prominence with the introduction of the high-tension spark plug in 1902, invented by Bosch employee Gottlob Honold.

From 1869 to 1876, Robert Bosch attended the Realschule (secondary-technical school) in Ulm, and then took an apprenticeship as a precision mechanic.

After his school and practical education, Bosch spent a further seven years working at diverse companies in Germany, the United States (for Thomas Edison in New York), and the UK (for the German firm Siemens). On November 15, 1886, he opened his own 'Workshop for Precision Mechanics and Electrical Engineering' in Stuttgart. A year later, he made a decisive improvement to an unpatented magneto ignition device made by the engine manufacturer Deutz, providing his first business success. The purpose of the device was to generate an electric spark to ignite the air/fuel mixture in a stationary engine. In 1897, Bosch was the first to adapt a magneto to a vehicle engine. In doing so, he solved one of the greatest technical problems faced by the nascent automotive industry. The invention of the first commercially viable high-voltage spark plug as part of a magneto-based ignition system by Robert Bosch's engineer Gottlob Honold in 1902 greatly enhanced the development of the internal combustion engine.

Under Bosch's leadership, Bosch GmbH was known for its progressive practices, including early adaption of the eight-hour work day, higher-than-normal wages, encouraging employees' suggestions, and a policy of promotion from within. Prior to his success in Germany, Bosch came to America, where he worked in one of Thomas Edison's laboratories. Between the two World Wars he became a peace activist, and he was involved in the German resistance during Hitler's regime. Decades after its founder's death, Robert Bosch GmbH remains a prominent manufacturer of auto parts, Blaupunkt audio products, and small appliances, which are sold in more than 120 nations.

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