Albert Einstein, the famous German born physicist, accomplished many outstanding things in his life. He developed five papers that changed the way people viewed science forever, (MacGill, 1989). Einstein is known as a brilliant physicist who contributed more to the scientific world than any other person. His theories on relativity paved the way for how science currently views time, space, energy, and gravity. Einstein was so advanced in his thinking that his studies and work set the standards for the control of scientific energy and space explorations currently being studied in the field of astrophysics. (web 6/03/2003) Brief Description of His Life Albert Einstein was born on March 14, 1874 in Ulm, Germany.
Soon after Alberts birth, the Einstein's moved to Munich where Alberts father, Hermann & his uncle set up a small electro-chemical business. (Hatt, 2001) Einstein's mother, Pauline, started his fascination with the violin, which brought him joy & relaxation. Albert was also very close with his sister Maja. (Reid, 2000) Einstein was fascinated by science & unexplained things from a young age.
He was thought to be mentally impaired because he hadn't become fluent in German until the age of nine. After school, Einstein became a clerk at the Swiss Patents Office in 1902, this job allowed him much time to focus on his own studies. His ideas were developed & then published in the Annuls of Physics. In 1905 Einstein married Mile va Meri c. (Hatt, 2001) World War One had a huge effect on Einstein.
Nazi's forced Einstein & his family to move to USA & later Albert divorced his wife & married his cousin, Elsa Lowenthal. This led to renewed interests in his Jewish roots. Einstein's combination of science, campaigns for pacifism & Zionism caused him to devote his life to peace. Einstein died in 1955. (Wilkinson, 1993) A Summary Of Previous Scientific Knowledge That He Built Off Einstein developed most of his own theories from two, which were developed by Isaac Newton in the 17 th Century & James Clerk Maxwell. He also formulated ideas & used information from Max Planck's work.
(Reid, 2000) The works of Isaac Newton that Einstein focused on was his theory of relativity. His papers said that all speeds are relative. (Wilkinson, 1993) For example, if a car is travelling at 80 km / h , it's moving at exactly that speed relative to a stationary observer. But relative to another car travelling towards the first at 60 km / h , it is approaching at 140 km / h . (MacGill, 1989) James Clerk Maxwell's papers stated that the speed of light never changes. The speed at which the light source or the person observing the light is moving makes no difference.
The speed of light is stated to be 3 x 10 8 m / s . (Hatt, 2001) Max Planck's paper introduced the idea of 'quanti sing energy'. This stated that energy, such as light was not continuous. Instead, energy existed in the form of discreet packets that he called 'quanta'. (Wilkinson, 1993) A Summary & Brief Technical Explanation Of Their Original Finds Einstein's fourth paper of 1905, contained the famous equation E = mc^2 which shows how energy (E) is related to the mass lost (m). "Careful measurement has shown that the mass of the nucleus is always less than the sum of the uncombined masses of its constituent particles" (Wilkinson 1993 pg.
530). The difference is mass is known as nuclear mass defect. The lost mass is converted into energy, which holds the particles of the nucleus together. This means that energy contained in any particle of matter if equal to its mass loss multiplied by the square of the speed of light (c^2) (3 x 10 8 m / s ). As the speed of light is very fast, a mass can, potentially, be converted into a huge amount of energy. This just proves that "Einstein is the greatest physicist of all time" (web 5/03/2003) The Impact These Findings Have Had On Society Einstein's scientific findings have affected the lives of so many people.
His works in the theory of relativity bridged many gaps that were left between the written works of Newton & Maxwell. (Wilkinson, 1993) Einstein's works on the formula "E = mc^2" was used in the development of the atomic bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima, Japan during the Second World War. This formula lies at the heart of all methods of obtaining nuclear energy. The Nazi's in the wake of World War Two demonstrated this. "As the Second World War approached, the Nazi's began to use principle to develop the atomic bomb" (MacGill, 1989, pg 16) Einstein played no part in the development of the atomic bomb; it just merely verifies the truth of his famous equation. (MacGill, 1989) "The other papers helped to develop modern physics & earned him the reputation of an artist." (Hatt, 2001, pg 20) After the publication many people took interest in his works.
Max Planck himself wrote to Einstein regarding his theory of relativity, it is believed that Planck studied Einstein's work & used it to develop his own theories. Einstein's insights ensured that science was never the same again. (Reid, 2000) In conclusion, Albert Einstein ranks as one of the greatest people for his contributions towards physics and his part as a philosopher of science and as a humanitarian. And like so many other great people in history, he was criticized and even threatened with death for his beliefs and convictions. Even up to his final days, the genius continued his search for laws that would explain more of the universe. To this day, his ideas and theories are still being followed through on.
(web 6/03/2003) BIBLIOGRAPHY Hatt, C. (2001), SCIENTIST & THEIR DISCOVERIES, Evans Brothers Limited, London MacGill, F. (1989), THE GREAT SCIENTISTS, Grolier Education Corporation, Connecticut Reid, S. (2000), ALBERT EINSTEIN, Heinemann, Great Britain Wilkinson, J. (1993), ESSENTIALS OF PHYSICS, Macmillan Education, Australia (2003), web (accessed 5/03/2003) (2002), EINSTEINS DISCOVERIES web (accessed 23/02/02) (2000), web (accessed 6/03/2003) (1995), web (accessed 6/03/2003).