Stark, Johannes

Stark, Johannes,

1874–1957, German physicist, Ph.D. Univ. of Munich, 1897. From 1900 until he retired in 1922, Stark served short stints on the faculties of several academic institutions, including the universities of Göttingen, Hanover, Greifswald, and Würzburg. Stark became involved with the Nazi party, was president of the Reich Physical-Technical Institute from 1933 to 1939, and after World War II served four years in a labor camp as the result of the denazification movement (1947–51). He was awarded the 1919 Nobel Prize in Physics for two major discoveries. In 1905 he observed the Doppler effectDoppler effect,
change in the wavelength (or frequency) of energy in the form of waves, e.g., sound or light, as a result of motion of either the source or the receiver of the waves; the effect is named for the Austrian scientist Christian Doppler, who demonstrated the effect
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 in radiation emitted by accelerated hydrogen atoms in a discharge tube, and in 1913 he reported the splitting of spectral lines in electric fields, a discovery that is known as the Stark effect and that contributed to the understanding of atomic structure.

Stark, Johannes

 

Born Apr. 15, 1874, in Schickenhof; died June 21, 1957, in Traunstein. German physicist (Federal Republic of Germany).

Stark became a professor at the Technische Hochschule in Hanover in 1906, at the Technische Hochschule in Aachen in 1909, at the University of Greifswald in 1917, and at the University of Würzburg in 1920. From 1933 to 1939, he was the president of the Reich Physical-Technical Institute in Berlin. Between 1934 and 1936, he was the president of the German Scientific Society.

In 1919, Stark received a Nobel Prize for the discovery of the Doppler effect in canal rays and for the discovery of the splitting of spectral lines in electric fields (seeSTARK EFFECT). Stark also carried out research in gas discharges. He discovered the deflection of light as it passes through nonuniform electric fields.

During Hitler’s regime, Stark was an active Nazi.

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