Wolfgang E. Pauli

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Wolfgang Ernst Pauli (Pascheles), Nobel Prize in Physics, 1945

Birthdate:
Birthplace: Wien, Austria
Death: Died in Zürich, Switzerland
Cause of death: Pancreatic Cancer
Place of Burial: Zollikon Cementary, Zürich, Switzerland
Immediate Family:

Son of Wolfgang Joseph Pauli (Pascheles) and Berta Camilla Pascheles (Pauli)
Husband of Käthe Margarethe Pauli and Franca Pauli (Pascheles)
Brother of Hertha Pauli (Pascheles)

Occupation: Physiker Nobelpeisträger
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Wolfgang E. Pauli

Wolfgang E. Pauli, Nobel Prize in Physics -1945 "for the discovery of the Exclusion Principle, also called the Pauli Principle".

Father: Wolfgang Joseph Pacheles. (b. 1869), (later changed to Pauli in 1898) received M.D., U. Prague and practiced in Vienna before leaving medicine for chemistry to eventually become full professor at U. Vienna where he became a major pioneering figure in colloid chemistry. Changed religious faiths from Jewish to Catholic in 1899 when he married daughter of editor of influential Vienna newspaper.

4/25/1900, Born, Vienna, Austria, oldest of two children. Recognized as an infant prodigy. Early schooling was in Vienna where he took his secondary education at the Dublingen Gymnasium excelling in math and physic and independently studied relativity. Graduated, 1918 with distinction. Submitted first paper on relativity before entering college. Shortly thereafter, submitted two more papers on same subject

Wolfgang Pauli was born on April 25th, 1900 in Vienna. He received his early education in Vienna before studying at the University of Munich under Arnold Sommerfeld. He obtained his doctor's degree in 1921 and spent a year at the University of Göttingen as assistant to Max Born and a further year with Niels Bohr at Copenhagen. The years 1923-1928 were spent as a lecturer at the University of Hamburg before his appointment as Professor of Theoretical Physics at the Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich. During 1935-1936, he was visiting Professor at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, New Jersey and he had similar appointments at the University of Michigan (1931 and 1941) and Purdue University (1942). He was elected to the Chair of Theoretical Physics at Princeton in 1940 but he returned to Zurich at the end of World War II.

Pauli was outstanding among the brilliant mid-twentieth century school of physicists. He was recognized as one of the leaders when, barely out of his teens and still a student, he published a masterly exposition of the theory of relativity. His exclusion principle, which is often quoted bearing his name, crystallized the existing knowledge of atomic structure at the time it was postulated and it led to the recognition of the two-valued variable required to characterize the state of an electron. Pauli was the first to recognize the existence of the neutrino, an uncharged and massless particle which carries off energy in radioactive ß-disintegration; this came at the beginning of a great decade, prior to World War II, for his centre of research in theoretical physics at Zurich.

Pauli helped to lay the foundations of the quantum theory of fields and he participated actively in the great advances made in this domain around 1945. Earlier, he had further consolidated field theory by giving proof of the relationship between spin and"statistics" of elementary particles. He has written many articles on problems of theoretical physics, mostly quantum mechanics, in scientific journals of many countries; his Theory of Relativity appears in the Enzyklopaedie der Mathematischen Wissenschaften, Volume 5, Part 2 (1920), his Quantum Theory in Handbuch der Physik, Vol. 23 (1926), and his Principles of Wave Mechanics in Handbuch der Physik, Vol. 24 (1933).

Pauli was a Foreign Member of the Royal Society of London and a member of the Swiss Physical Society, the American Physical Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He was awarded the Lorentz Medal in 1930.

Wolfgang Pauli married Franciska Bertram on April 4th, 1934. He died in Zurich on December 15th, 1958.

From Nobel Lectures, Physics 1942-1962, Elsevier Publishing Company, Amsterdam, 1964

This autobiography/biography was written at the time of the award and first published in the book series Les Prix Nobel. It was later edited and republished in Nobel Lectures. To cite this document, always state the source as shown above.

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Wolfgang E. Pauli's Timeline

1900
April 25, 1900
Wien, Austria
1929
December 23, 1929
Age 29
Berlin, Berlin, Germany
1958
December 15, 1958
Age 58
Zürich, Switzerland
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Zürich, Switzerland