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The restless Universe
The restless Universe

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3 Appendix: Some highlights of physics

c. 624 BCBirth of Thales of Miletus: traditionally 'the first physicist'.
384 BCBirth of Aristotle: author of Physics.
1543Nicolaus Copernicus' De Revolutionibus Orbium Celestium.
1600William Gilbert's De Magnete describing the behaviour of magnets.
1609Johannes Kepler's first and second laws published in Astronomia Nova.
1632Galileo's Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief Systems of the World published.
1638Galileo's work on motion described in his Discorsi.
1687Newton's laws of motion and gravitation published in his Principia.
1704Newton's work on light and spectra described in his Opticks.
1729Stephen Gray discovers electrical conduction.
1736Leonhard Euler introduces differential equations into mechanics.
1755Euler lays the foundations of fluid mechanics.
1784Pierre Laplace introduces concept of electric potential.
1785Charles Coulomb announces his law of electrostatics.
1799Pierre Laplace's Méchanique Céleste (Volume 1).
1801Thomas Young demonstrates the wave nature of light.
1803John Dalton proposes his atomic theory of matter.
1820Hans Oersted demonstrates electromagnetism.
1821Michael Faraday demonstrates the principle of the electric motor.
1825Sadi Carnot lays the foundations of thermodynamics.
1843James Joule determines the mechanical equivalent of heat.
1847Hermann von Helmholtz formulates conservation of energy.
1848Lord Kelvin proposes the absolute temperature scale.
1849Armand Fizeau makes first accurate measurement of the speed of light.
1850Rudolf Clausius introduces entropy.
1859James Clerk Maxwell develops the kinetic theory of gases.
1865Maxwell's Dynamical Theory of the Electromagnetic Field.
1871Dmitry Mendeleev's periodic table of the elements.
1877Ludwig Boltzmann introduces statistical interpretation of entropy.
1882Albert Michelson measures the speed of light.
1887Michelson-Morley experiment fails to detect the ether.
1887Heinrich Hertz discovers photoelectric effect.
1888Heinrich Hertz demonstrates the existence of radio waves.
1895Wilhelm Röntgen discovers X-rays.
1896Henri Becquerel discovers radioactivity.
1897J. J. Thomson discovers the electron.
1900Max Planck introduces the quantum.
1905Einstein publishes papers on special relativity, Brownian motion and the photoelectric effect.
1911Ernest Rutherford announces discovery of the atomic nucleus.
1911Victor Hess discovers cosmic rays.
1913Niels Bohr's quantum theory of the atom.
1916Einstein's general theory of relativity.
1924Bose-Einstein statistics introduced.
1925Heisenberg introduces quantum mechanics (matrix form).
1925Wolfgang Pauli announces the exclusion principle.
1926Schrödinger introduces wave mechanics.
1926Bom's probability interpretation of quantum mechanics.
1926Fermi-Dirac statistics introduced.
1926Heisenberg formulates the uncertainty principle.
1928The Dirac equation describes relativistic electrons and leads to an understanding of spin and the prediction of antiparticles.
1929Edwin Hubble discovers the expansion of the Universe.
1932James Chadwick discovers the neutron.
1932Carl Anderson discovers the positron.
1934Fermi introduces the weak interaction.
1935Hideki Yukawa lays the foundation of the strong interaction.
1939Otto Hahn and Lise Meitner discover nuclear fission.
1948John Bardeen, William Brattain and William Shockley produce the transistor.
1948Feynman introduces his diagrams for quantum electrodynamics.
1948George Gamow proposes the basis of Big Bang theory.
1964Murray Gell-Mann introduces quarks.
1965Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson discover cosmic microwave background radiation.
1967Jocelyn Bell Burnell discovers first pulsar (a neutron star).
1968Steven Weinberg, Abdus Salam and Sheldon Glashow develop unified theory of electroweak interaction.
1972Fritsch, Gell-Mann and Bardeen develop quantum chromodynamics.
1977Klaus von Klitzing discovers the quantum Hall effect.
1980Alan Guth proposes an inflationary early Universe.
1981Green and Schwarz introduce superstring theory.
1982Alain Aspect conducts experiment demonstrating non-local aspects of quantum physics.
1986Bednorz and Mueller discover high-temperature superconductivity.
1991CERN confirms the existence of three generations of fundamental particles.
1995Witten and Townsend develop M-Theory.
1995Cornell, Wieman and Anderson discover Bose-Einstein condensate of atomic gas.