Almost everyone loves the very pleasant smell that is associated with the first rains, I am reasonably sure that only a very small fraction of the general population hates it. I belong to the group that loves it! It is one of the most sublime fragrances that i know of!
I discovered this word last Monsoons serendipitously while studying words for the Graduate Record Examination and was reasonably surprised to see that this specific smell actually had a name to it.
The word Petrichor comes from Greek petros, a stone and ichor, from the Greek word for the fluid that flows like blood in the veins of the gods. So the word means something like “essence of rock”. A chemical reaction (or a series of them) is responsible for this beautiful fragrance. Two Australian researchers discovered the exact origin to this essence, they discovered that the smell was essentially an oily aroma that comes from rocks or soil that are quite often clay based. The oils were given off by plants and other vegetation in long dry spells and were adsorbed on the rock surfaces and soils particles which were released in the air in the next rains. These two researchers coined this name in an article published in 1964 in the magazine Nature.
However, if one can actually experience this thanks to a chemical, then why not produce it artificially, put a patent on it and market it aggressively?