Katsuko Saruhasi

Chemist from Japan

Katsuko Saruhashi (猿橋 勝子, Saruhashi Katsuko, March 22, 1920 – September 29, 2007) was a geochemist who made some of the first measurements of carbon dioxide (CO2) levels in seawater and subsequently showed the evidence in seawater and the atmosphere of the dangers of radioactive fallout. Saruhashi was born in Tokyo and graduated from the University of Tokyo in 1943. In 1950, she started studying CO2 levels in seawater and earned her doctorate in chemistry in 1957 from the University of Tokyo, becoming the first woman to do so. Instead of teaching school, as was expected at the time, Saruhashi wanted to do research. She then joined the Geochemical Laboratory established by Yasuo Miyake, a government meteorologist and her mentor. At that time, CO2 levels were not recognized as important; Saruhashi was not only the first person to study these levels worldwide, she also had to invent the methods for doing so. She died September 29, 2007 of pneumonia at her home in Tokyo. She was 87. After the Bikini Atoll nuclear tests in 1954, the Japanese government asked the Geochemical Laboratory to analyze and monitor radioactivity in the seawater and in rainfall. A Japanese fishing trawler had  ( Wikipedia article )


Personal facts

Date of birth
Chemist, Scientist


Institution From To
University of Tokyo


Date of death
Place of death

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