Max Planck - The Photon Of Physics

11 Mar 2009, dilip Comments: | Views: 2411 | | Category: Science Legends

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-Coutesy http://nobelprize.org/nobelfoundation/publications/lectures/index.html, Wikipedia and Max Planck Institue




Max Planck is considered as the founder of "Quantum Theory" . His concept of Discrete bundles of energy the Photon turned the course of events in the flow of physics. His famous assumption that energy is not continuous but discrete and later consolidated by experiments. This led later to Bhor's Theory of "Hydrogen Atom".


He stated his "Planck Theory of Radiation" To explain the "Ultraviolet Catastrophe" caused by assuming that energy is continuous. His life in brief is provide below.


Life In Brief


Max Karl Ernst Ludwig Planck was born in Kiel, Germany, on April 23, 1858, the son of Julius Wilhelm and Emma (née Patzig) Planck. His father was Professor of Constitutional Law in the University of Kiel, and later in Göttingen.


Planck studied at the Universities of Munich and Berlin, where his teachers included Kirchhoff and Helmholtz, and received his doctorate of philosophy at Munich in 1879.





 



Planck's earliest work was on the subject of thermodynamics, an interest he acquired from his studies under Kirchhoff, whom he greatly admired, and very considerably from reading R. Clausius' publications. He published papers on entropy, on thermoelectric ity and on the theory of dilute solutions.


Experimental observations on the wavelength distribution of the energy emitted by a black body as a function of temperature were at variance with the predictions of classical physics. Planck was able to deduce the relationship between the ener gy and the frequency of radiation. In a paper published in 1900, he announced his derivation of the relationship: this was based on the revolutionary idea that the energy emitted by a resonator could only take on discrete values or quanta. The energy for a resonator of frequency v is hv where h is a universal constant, now called Planck's constant.


Where h= 6.627 x 10 -34 joule-sec is the basic constant of Quantum Physics.


The importance of the discovery, with its far-reaching effect on classical physics, was not appreciated at first. However the evidence for its validi ty gradually became overwhelming as its application accounted for many discrepancies between observed phenomena and classical theory. Among these applications and developments may be mentioned Einstein's explanation of the photoelectric effect.


He was elected to Foreign Membership of the Royal Society in 1926, being awarded the Society's Copley Medal in 1928.


Planck faced a troubled and tragic period in his life during the period of the Nazi government in Germany, when he felt it his duty to remain in his country but was openly opposed to some of the Government's policies, particularly as regards the persecuti on of the Jews. In the last weeks of the war he suffered great hardship after his home was destroyed by bombing.


He was revered by his colleagues not only for the importance of his discoveries but for his great personal qualities. He was also a gifted pianist and is said to have at one time considered music as a career.


He died at Göttingen on October 4, 1947.


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