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Physicists and astronomers


Pascal, Blaise 1623-1662
French mathematician

Pauli, Wolfgang 1900-1958
Austrian born Swiss physicist. Proposed the exclusion principle for the energies of two particles within an atom for which he was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1945.

Penzias, Arno and Wilson, Robert W 1965
Discovered the cosmic microwave background radiation and were awarded the Nobel Prize for this in 1978.

Perrin, Jean-Baptiste 1870-1942
French physicist. Perrin tube. Discovered that cathode rays were electrons. Awarded the Nobel Prize in 1926 for his work on Brownian motion and the size of atoms.

Planck, Max Karl 1858-1947
Equation for the energy of a quantum. Studied thermodynamics in particular the distribution of energy emitted by a hot object with wavelength. Planck's radiation formula 1900. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1918. His son Erwin was executed for plotting to assassinate Hitler.

Plato 427-347 BC
Greek philosopher, scientist and mathematician.

Poggendorf, Johann C 1796-1877
German physicist, editor and author. Invented the potentiometer (1850). Lamp and scale for measuring small deflections. Suggested the thermoelectric generator as a source of electrical energy.

Poincare 1854-1912

Poynting, John Henry 1852-1914
British physicist. Poynting vector. Measured G using a balance experiment.

Ptolemy 070-147 AD
Greek philosopher. He returned to the Earth centred idea of the universe, but he modified it by introducing the idea of the epicycle. This was to help explain the apparent backward or retrograde motion of the planets when seen from the Earth. He said that the planets moved around small circles which themselves moved around big circles round the Earth.

Pythagoras 572-492 BC Greek philosopher and mathematician. Investigated the sounds made by vibrating strings. Law of the right-angled triangle. Proved that the square root of two was an irrational number.

© Keith Gibbs 2016