French physicist who, in his studies of the Brownian motion of minute
particles suspended in liquids, verified Albert Einstein's explanation
of this phenomenon and thereby confirmed the atomic nature of matter.
For this achievement he was honoured with the Nobel Prize for Physics
Around 1908 Perrin began to study Brownian motion, the erratic movement
of particles suspended in a liquid. Einstein's mathematical analysis
(1905) of this phenomenon suggested that the particles were being jostled
by the randomly moving water molecules around them. Using the newly
developed ultramicroscope, Perrin carefully observed the manner of sedimentation
of these particles and provided experimental confirmation of Einstein's
equations. His observations also enabled him to estimate the size of
water molecules and atoms as well as their quantity in a given volume.
This was the first time the size of atoms and molecules could be reliably
calculated from actual visual observations. Perrin's work helped raise
atoms from the status of useful hypothetical objects to observable entities
whose reality could no longer be denied.
Physics | Literature | Peace | Chemistry | Economics | Medicine | About Us |
All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. Timeline of Nobel Prize Winners is not affiliated with The Nobel Foundation. A Special Thanks to the 3w-hosting.com for helping make this site a success. External sites are not endorsed or supported by http://www.nobel-winners.com/ Copyright © 2003 All Rights Reserved.