Pauli Wolfgang
Country United States
Category Physics
Year 1945

Pauli Wolfgang, 1900 - 1958, Year won 1945, made a vital contribution to the development of the Quantum theory..

Wolfgang Pauli was born in 1900 in Vienna, Austria. In 1921 he received a Ph.D. in physics in Munich and worked with the well known physicists Max Born, James Franck and Niels Bohr, who introduced him to the field of sub-atomic particles and Quantum Mechanics. Later he served as Professor of Physics in Hamburg and Switzerland. During the second world war he worked at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, then returned to Zurich, where he passed away in 1958.

Wolfgang Pauli was awarded the 1945 Nobel prize in Physics “For the discovery of the Exclusion Principle, also called the Pauli Principle.” The Exclusion Principle states that in a multi-electron atom there can be only one electron in each quantum state.

Pauli also discovered that the electron has an innate characteristic that was later called spin. He thereby increased the number of parameters that describe the electron’s state to four: energy, angular momentum, spin and the sum of the spin and the momentum. According to Pauli’s Exclusion Principle, this set of four numbers can characterize only one electron in the atom.

Pauli made an additional important contribution to the field of nuclear physics. In 1930 he postulated the existence of the neutrino, an elusive elementary particle that was empirically discovered only 25 years later.

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