Peter Josephus Wilhelmus Debye

Peter Josephus Wilhelmus Debye was born in the Netherlands in 1884, lived in Europe until the Second World War and emigrated to the USA in 1940.

The twentieth century was a very eventful one, marked by two world wars - , revolutions and countless scientific and technical achievements. In the natural sciences, countless important discoveries were made, many of which were also significant for the research of Peter Josephus Wilhelmus Debye, such as:
(in chronological order from the beginning of the twentieth century).

  • Discovery of the elements radium and polonium, through the characterisation of radium (1903, MARIE CURIE)
  • Decay of elements and chemistry - - of radioactive substances (1908, ERNEST RUTHERFORD)
  • Equation of state of gases and liquids (1910, JOHANNES DIDERIK VAN DER WAALS)
  • Exploration of crystal structures by means of X-rays (1915, WILLIAM HENRY BRAGG AND WILLIAM LAWRENCE BRAGG)
  • Quantum theory (1918, MAX PLANCK)
  • Thermodynamics, mathematical representation (1920, WALTHER NERNST)
  • Theory of relativity (1921, ALBERT EINSTEIN)
  • Structure of atoms and the radiation they emit (1922, NIELS BOHR)
  • Wave nature of electrons (1929, LOUIS VICTOR DE BROGLIE)
  • Discovery of the neutron (1935, JAMES CHADWICK)
  • Syntheses of new radioactive elements (1935, FREDERIC JOLIOT-CURIE and IRENE JOLIOT-CURIE)
  • Discovery of new radioactive elements produced by neutron bombardment of nuclear reactions triggered by slow neutrons (1938, ENRICO FERMI)
  • Nuclear fission of atoms (1944, OTTO HAHN)
  • Prediction of the existence of mesons (1949, HIDEKI YUKAWA)
  • Discovery of mesons (1950, CECIL FRANK POWELL)
  • Discovery of the antiproton (1959, EMILIO SEGRE and OWEN CHAMBERLAIN)

DEBYE experienced the First World War in Germany, in Gottingen. Many Europeans emigrated to the States at that time, DEBYE stayed. At the beginning of the Second World War, DEBYE was in Berlin, as director of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute.

In 1940 he left Germany and Europe, emigrated to the USA and remained there until his death in 1966.
To increase the pressure on wartime Japan, the USA dropped an atomic bom - - on Hiroshima on 6 August 1945 and on Nagasaki three days later. Millions of people lost their lives and many still suffer from the consequences of nuclear radiation today.

Read more:

Leben Chadwick

Neoconservatism after 1945

Speak the language of your computer: source texts and programming languages

Evariste Galois

Cubic equations, graphical solving

All Pins