Kai Chen
5-26-11
AP physics
Mr. Maloney
Werner Heisenberg
heisenberg.jpgThe Physicist I am writing about is Werner Heisenberg. Heisenberg was born in Wurzburg, Germany. He is son of Kaspar Earnesta August Heisenberg, who was a secondary school teacher of classical languages and was known to be the only ordinarius professor of medieval. Heisenberg studied physics and mathematics from 1920 to 1923 at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitat München and the Georg-August-Universitat Gottingen. During his time at Munich, he studied under Arnold Sommerfeld and Wilhelm Wien. And while he dwelled in Gottingen, he studied physics with Max Born and James Franck, and mathematics with David Hilbert. He received his doctorate in 1923, at Munich under Sommerfeld. He completed his Habilitation in 1924, at Gottingen under Born.
Because Sommerfeld knew of Heisenber’s interest in the atomic physics. He took Heisenberg to GottinHeisenberg's Gottingen for the Bohr Festival in June 1922. There Heisenberg met with Bohr who made very significant effect on him. Sommerfeld also helped Heisenberg chose his topic for the doctoral thesis, and it was on turbelence. In this paper Heisenberg talked about the stability of Laminar flow and the natures of turblent flow. Using Orr-Sommerfeld’s Equation, Heisenberg in his paper talked about the problem of stability.
In 1926 he was appointed professor in theoretical physics at the University of Copenhagen under Niels Bohr and in 1927, when he was only 26, he was made professor of Theoretical Physics at the University of Leipzig. Heisenberg made significant contribution to the quantum mechanics. He is famous for asserting the uncertainty principle of quantum theory. Where he explained that the determination of the position and momentum of a moving particle needed contains errors the product of which cannot be less than the quantum constant h and that, although these errors are negligible on the human scale, they cannot be ignored in studies of the atom.
Heisenberg did experiments for the Germans where he tested chain reaction experiments with heavy water that made him to believe in the power of a nuclear weapon. Heisenberg visited his former teacher, Niels Bohr, in Copenhagen in 1941, and asked his advice on the right course of action for the development of atomic energy. However, Bohr began to have the impression that the Nazis were developing a nuclear bomb. After the nazis surreneded it was later concluded that the Germans were never close to developing an atomic bomb.
In addition, he made important contributions to nuclear physics, quantum field theory, and particle physics. In fact Heisenberg was awarded the 1932 Nobel Prize in Physics for the creation of quantum mechanics, and its application to the discovery of the allotropic forms of hydrogen.
http://www.ucpress.edu/book.php?isbn=9780520229266
http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/physics/laureates/1932/heisenberg-bio.html
http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/~history/Biographies/Heisenberg.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Werner_Heisenberg