Chemistry 6 5/22/03Scientist ReportAlbert Einstein’s Life and Contributions to ScienceAlbert Einstein is one of the most well known scientists, physicists,and thinkers of all time. Many people regard him as a genius. Hisintelligence can be explained by his childhood, but can be proved by hiscontributions to the field of physics. Einstein was born on March 14, 1879 in Ulm, Wrttemberg, Germany.
Hewas raised by his father, Hermann, and his mother, Paulina Koch, as aJewish child. His good family background is what many people believe to bethe main reason for Einstein’s intellectual gigantism. His family was not perfect, however. His family moved many times dueto his father’s failed business adventures. As a child, Einstein was slowto learn to speak; this worried his parents a great deal.
These fears werediminished when his parents noticed their child’s success in solving manypuzzles. He also built many things with blocks at that young age, and whenhe got older, he was building enormous mansions out of playing cards. When Einstein was asked what first impressed and stimulated his mind,he told them that his father had showed him a compass at the age of five. Young Albert was intrigued by how the needle always pointed in the samedirection, no matter how the compass was turned. Einstein later said hefelt “something deeply hidden had to be behind things.Order now
“When Albert was old enough, he attended an elementary school inAarau, and later moved on to a secondary school in Munich. He absolutelyhated the high school he later went to in Munich. He felt that themindless drilling in academic high schools was useless, so he quit at agefifteen nearing the end of the mid-term. He much preferred to study athome, especially geometry and books on popular science. Later on, thesestudies came into conflict with his deep religious feelings when herealized that the Bible could not be literally true. To that shockingrevelation, he created his lifelong distrust of authority.
This led to theease with which he was able to discard long-standing scientific prejudices. He also did this so he could join his parents who were living in Italy atthe time. Einstein didn’t attend college. Instead, he went to the SwissPolytechnic Institute in Zurich in order to study mathematics and physics. After graduation in 1900, he became an examiner at the Swiss Patent Office.
This job gave Einstein a lot of free time, during which he performedscientific experiments. These experiments led to the Papers of 1905. ThePapers of 1905 were three papers written by Einstein to a German scientificperiodical called Annals of Physics. The first paper was the Quantum Theory, which was basically aboutquanta and the flow of light. This explained how intense light couldrelease electrons from metal.
For this paper, Einstein received the NobelPrize in Physics in 1921. The second paper was Einstein’s Special Theoryof Relativity. This is the most famous of Albert Einstein’s works. Thetheory of relativity revolutionized scientific thought with new ideas oftime, space, mass, motion, and gravitation.
It treated matter and energyas exchangeable, not distinct and also laid the basis of nuclear energy(E=mc). The third of these papers was about Brownian Motion. This paperconfirmed the Atomic Theory of matter. In 1915, Einstein announced thedevelopment of the General Theory of Relativity, called the Unified FieldTheory, which was based on his special theory.
Einstein failed to establishthis theory, though he spent the last 25 years of his life working on it. As previously stated, Einstein’s paper on relativity was the basis ofnuclear energy. This led to the creation of atomic weapons. On August 2,1929, Einstein wrote a letter to President Franklin D. Roosevelt thatexplained the possibility of an atomic bomb and that Nazi Germany wasalready trying to create one. This letter brought about the ManhattanProject, which created the first nuclear weapon.
From this point on, Einstein made few contributions to the fields ofmath, science, and physics; and when he did, they weren’t as big orimportant as the others were. Information on these is hard to find, sincemost biographies and articles about Einstein focus on the Papers of 1905. However, in 1952, Einstein was actually offered the Presidency of Israel. He declined this position though, saying that he wasn’t “fitted” for therole.
He then died nearly three years later on April 15, 1955.