Scientists Heroes

Albert Einstein

by Eric from Montvale

In the first decades of the twentieth century, Albert Einstein changed the course of physics and changed the view of the universe. He published several theories. One of his theories showed that light was made up of tiny particles. Another theory proved that atoms existed. His theory of relativity showed a way of measuring things that overturned Isaac Newton’s theory, a 200 year old view of the universe. The great scientist and physicist, Albert Einstein, was born in Ulm, Germany on March 14, 1879. No one in his family had ever been as gifted in science or math. Most of his relatives had been farmers, office clerks or salespeople. His father owned an electrical and engineering works store, however, he was unsuccessful. Albert’s uncle decided to help him by opening a shop with him if the Einstein family moved to Munich.

As a child, Einstein was very lonely and shy. He liked to spend time alone in parks. He first realized the wonders of science at the age of four, when his dad introduced him to magnets and their properties. By the time he was thirteen, he was reading and understanding scientific material that many adults found impossible to comprehend. When he compared what he read in science books to what he was being taught about the Bible, he began to doubt parts of his religious training in school.

As the political situation in Germany worsened, the Einstein business failed once again. Albert’s mother saved them because her wealthy relatives in Milan, Italy were able to help them start a new business. When the family left Germany to move to Italy, Albert withdrew from his school in Munich (at age fifteen). About a year later, he went to Aarau, Switzerland to attend secondary school. He was sixteen, two years younger than most of the students who would be starting there. He took the examination to get into the school and scored very high in mathematics. He failed miserably in French, English, zoology and botany, supposedly on purpose. The director, however, was impressed with his math abilities and offered to let him study for a year in a different school before entering at the Swiss Polytechnic Institute in Zurich. After studying math and physics, he realized that science was a better way to seek out answers to his own personal questions. He began to pay more attention to energy, motion, and force. Einstein had lived in Germany and Italy for most of his life, and his schoolmates admired his five foot nine inches, curly black hair, narrow mustache, and the fact that a lot of girls like him. He never got close to any girls because his thoughts about physics and work on his theories always came first. He graduated in 1900. On February 21, 1901 he became a Swiss citizen. He worked as a patent examiner at the Swiss Patent Office from 1902 to 1909. After work, he concentrated on his own research and wrote many papers.

Albert Einstein was unique in many ways. Not only has he been called the smartest man on earth, but he also made many discoveries. His most important discovery was his theory of relativity. In 1921, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in physics for his theory on the behavior of light. This theory was the basis for the invention of the phototube that is used in television sets.Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity revolutionized scientific thinking with new ideas of time, space, mass, motion, and gravity. His famous equation, E=mc, started the development of atomic energy. At one point it was reported that only a dozen people in the world understood his theory because it was so complex!

Since World War II was getting more intense, the US thought that the Nazis might be building an atomic bomb. Einstein sent a letter to Franklin D. Roosevelt explaining that it might be possible to make one of our own. Fortunately, Germany was unsuccessful in the creation of the bomb. With the help of our president, Einstein constructed the first atomic bomb in history but it was never used for the war against Germany. We didn’t need the bomb to beat Germany, but we used it on Hiroshima when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor. Einstein was upset for days because he was so distraught about how many people died from the bomb because he was a pacifist.I admire all of Einstein’s accomplishments because they were so important that they changed many scientific theories. I want to accomplish things that will change different scientific or mathematic theories so I will always be remembered just like Albert Einstein. I also hope to have a discovery that will help humanity. Albert Einstein inspires me so much that I will strive to set goals to make major achievements like he did. He lived 76 years (1879-1955) and discovered so much in so little time.

Page created on 4/22/2002 12:00:00 AM

Last edited 4/22/2002 12:00:00 AM

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