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Physicists and astronomers


Rayleigh, Lord (John William Strutt) 1842-1919
Classical model of black body radiation. Devised the Rayleigh-Jeans law. Fits the observations only at long wavelengths.

Reamur, Rene Antoine 1683-1757
French physicist and naturalist. Made thermometers containing alcohol-water mixtures. Devised a scale of temperature based on 80 degrees between melting and boiling of one of these mixtures.

Reynolds, Osborne 1842-1912
British physicist and engineer. Fluid flow and kinetic theory of gases.

Roget 1779-1869

Römer, Olaus 1644-1710
A Danish astronomer who, in 1676, showed that the speed of light was finite. Paper published 1675. Measurement of the speed of light by the movement of the Galilean satellites of Jupiter

Roentgen, Konrad von 1845-1923
Professor of Physics at Würzburg. X ray studies. Discovered X rays in 1895 gaining the Nobel Prize for this in 1901. The first Nobel prize for Physics.

Rowland, Henry A. 1848-1901
American physicist. Produced high grade diffraction gratings (1822). Showed that moving electrical charges produce a magnetic field (1878).

Rubin, Vera 1928-
American astronomer who (in 1970) proposed the existence of dark matter in the Universe.

Rumford, Count von (Benjamin Thomson) 1753-1814
First true explanation of the nature of heat energy. Conservation of energy. Canon boring experiment. Mechanical equivalent of heat. American who became a British citizen and took a German title.

Ruska, Ernst 1906-1988
Invented the electron microscope for which he received the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1986.

Rutherford, Ernest 1871-1937
Born in New Zealand. Proposed the disintegration theory of radioactivity with Soddy in 1903 and was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics for this in 1908. In 1911 he devised the nuclear theory of the atom following alpha particle studies, the so called Rutherford scattering. In 1919 he achieved the first artificial disintegration of an atom.
© Keith Gibbs 2007