Leon Foucault

Foucault’s Pendulum

Foucault’s Pendulum

Foucault’s Pendulum at the Panthéon, Paris, © Javi Masa On January 3, 1851, French physicist Leon Foucault started to experiment with his eponymous pendulum, by which he was able to proof the earth‘s rotation. Actually, how can you prove that the earth is a rotating orb in an easy-to-see experiment and – of course – without spaceflight? By today, Foucault’s simple device is part of numerous natural science museums around the world. Ok, how does…
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Hippolyte Fizeau and the Speed of Light

Hippolyte Fizeau and the Speed of Light

Hippolyte Fizeau (1819-1896) photo: Charles Reutlinger, Académie des Sciences, Smithsonian Institution Libraries On September 23, 1819, French physicist Armand Hippolyte Louis Fizeau was born. He is well known for his calculation of the speed of light and his suggestion to use length of a light wave be used as a length standard. Hippolyte Fizeau was born in Paris as the eldest son of Béatrice and Louis Fizeau, who was professor of Pathology at the…
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Fizeau, Foucault and Astronomical Photography

Fizeau, Foucault and Astronomical Photography

On April 2, 1845, Armand Hippolyte Louis Fizeau and Jean Bernard Léon Foucault manage to make the very first photography of the Sun. Thereby, they both initiate astronomical photography. From a previous blog post you may remember Léon Foucault’s Pendulum.[4] The instrument was used to proof Earth’s rotation in the 1850s and counts to one of Foucault’s biggest scientific achievements. But let’s start a little bit earlier. Leon Foucault was born on September…
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