Pauli, Wolfgang

(1900-1958)
   physicist; discovered the exclusion prin-ciple, according to which no two electrons can be described as having the same energy state. The son of a chemistry professor at Vienna, he comprehended Albert Einstein's* relativity theory while still in Gymnasium. He studied theo-retical physics under Munich's Arnold Sommerfeld and took a doctorate in 1922; next he accompanied fellow student Werner Heisenberg* to Gottingen, where both worked under Max Born.* Pauli went to Copenhagen (followed by Heisenberg) to study with Niels Bohr. His inquiry into Bohr's quantum theory culminated in his landmark 1925 discovery of the exclusion principle; it was an essential step in validating quantum mechanics. By 1926 he and Heisenberg were delineating the quantum dynamics that occupied physicists for the next twenty years.
   In 1928 Pauli succeeded Peter Debye at Zurich's Eidgenossische Technische Hochschule; he held the chair until his death (at Einstein's invitation, he worked at Princeton's Institute for Advanced Study during World War II). Intrigued by the roots of scientific thought, he was unexpectedly attracted to Carl Jung's psychology. In 1930 he proposed the existence of an electrically neutral sub-atomic particle; the reality of the neutrino was later confirmed by Enrico Fermi. Pauli was the recipient of the Nobel Prize for physics in 1945, and his 1933 article on wave mechanics remained in the Handbuch der Physik through 1958. He rarely altered his ideas; Victor Weisskopf eulogized him as the conscience of theoretical physics."
   REFERENCES:DSB; Hendry, Creation of Quantum Mechanics; Laurikainen, Beyond the Atom.

A Historical dictionary of Germany's Weimar Republic, 1918-1933. .

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  • Wolfgang — may refer to:* Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart * Wolfgang Pauli * Wolfgang Borchert * Wolfgang Ketterle * Wolfgang Kuck, German volleyball player * Wolfgang Langewiesche * Wolfgang of Regensburg * Dr. Wolfgang Klietmann * Wolfgang Petersen * Wolfgang… …   Wikipedia

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