Ri Sung Gi is widely known to the world as an inventor of vinalon.
Ri is winner of Kim Il Sung Prize and People’s Prize, Labour Hero, People’s Scientist, academician, professor and doctor. He is a famous scientist of the world who rendered remarkable services to science and technology and to the development of chemical industry in the DPRK.
Ri was born in the end of the feudal Joson Dynasty and was forced to suffer the bitter lot of slavery under the colonial rule of Japanese imperialism. He aimed to study for the nation as he grew up by being influenced by the family, strong in national consciousness.
Being discriminated and disregarded, Ri studied under adversity in a foreign land, but he was well known as the first-class talent.
As he engrossed in research with national dignity and scientific ambition, Ri invented at the age of his 30s vinalon, a new polyvinyl alcohol-group synthetic fibre, for the first time in the world.
President Kim Il Sung made Ri realize his ideal to make scientific research for the Korean nation.
Ri came to the northern half of Korea in the period of the Fatherland Liberation War and made research on vinalon under the President’s special trust, thus realizing his long-cherished desire.
The (then) February 8 Vinalon Factory was built to produce vinalon with abundant limestone and anthracite as a raw material on a basis of his research and a large-scale vinalon industry was established in the DPRK.
Later Ri continued his research to improve its quality and increase species of vinalon, thus making more successes in his scientific research.
Ri worked on several sessions as a deputy to the Supreme People’s Assembly and a president of the Hamhung Branch of the State Academy of Sciences from February 1961 to February 1996, the last of his life.
Ri’s typical work “Vinalon”(booklet) was translated and published in a foreign country.
Ri made a famous saying in his lifetime:
If your decendents ask about the history of vinalon in future, do not tell them any scientist’s or technician’s name but the history of the WPK founded and led by President Kim Il Sung.
Then they will know how vinalon was born in our era.