Charles Martin Hall was an American scientist best-known for inventing a process that could produce aluminium cheaply. Hall produced the first samples of aluminium in 1886 and the process involved passing an electric current through alumina dissolved in cryolite. Around the same time, French scientist Paul Heroult produced aluminium using the same process and therefore, this process of making aluminium is known as the Hall-Heroult process. The Hall-Heroult process reduced the price of aluminium drastically and made it more affordable.
Hall and Alfred E. Hunt formed the Reduction Company of Pittsburgh, which opened the first large-scale aluminum production plants. The Reduction Company later became the Aluminum Company of America (ALCOA). Hall won the Perkin Medal, the highest award in American industrial chemistry, in 1911.