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12 December 2013 1:00 pm ,
Vol. 342 ,
Stefan Behnisch has won awards for designing science labs and other buildings that are smart, sustainable, and...
The iconic 125-year-old Lick Observatory on Mount Hamilton near San Jose, California, is facing the threat of closure...
Recent results from the Curiosity Mars rover have helped scientists formulate a plan for the next phase of its mission...
A new, remarkably powerful drug that cripples the hepatitis C virus (HCV) came to market last week, but it sells for $...
In pretoothbrush populations, gumlines would often be marred by a thick, visible crust of calcium phosphate, food...
Evolutionary biologists have long studied how the Mexican tetra, a drab fish that lives in rivers and creeks but has...
Victorian astronomers spent countless hours laboriously charting the positions of stars in the sky. Such sky mapping,...
In an ambitious project to study 1000 years of sickness and health, researchers are excavating the graveyard of the now...
- 12 December 2013 1:00 pm , Vol. 342 , #6164
- About Us
A Genius, Relatively Speaking
15 March 1999 7:30 pm
is the birthday of legendary physicist Albert Einstein, born in Germany in 1879. Einstein took science by storm with his special and general theories of relativity, which dethroned Isaac Newton's laws of mechanics, merged space and time, and established the speed of light as a cosmic limit. The relativity theories, published in 1905 and 1916, ushered in new eras in science and science fiction, inspiring visions of traveling back in time or growing younger by moving at speeds approaching that of light.
Einstein is perhaps best known for his equation E = MC2, which describes the equivalence of mass and energy. He also showed that physical laws should hold true no matter how they are measured, explained the random movement of particles in fluids (called Brownian motion), and laid the foundations for the photon theory of light. Einstein predicted the bending of starlight near the sun or other massive bodies and became a celebrity when this effect was observed during a solar eclipse in 1919. Einstein won the Nobel Prize in physics in 1921 for his work in theoretical physics and particularly for his discovery of the photoelectric effect, in which visible light and other radiation impinging on a substance dislodges electrons from it.
Last fall, Einstein's personal life made news after the auction of love letters to his first wife, Mileva Maric, whom he eventually divorced (see ScienceNOW, 25 November 1996). Einstein died 18 April 1955.