Rudolf Clausius

Physicists

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Birth Place

Koslin, Prussia (now Koszalin, Poland)

Birth Date and Death

Born January 2, 1822 and died August 24, 1888 in Bonn, Germany

Education

Clausius entered the University of Berlin in 1840 although he was still not clear which subjects he would pursue. In 1846 he entered Boeck's Royal Seminary and submitted his dissertation, on the problem of reflected light in the sky, to Halle University in 1847. He received his doctorate, with distinction, on 15 July 1848.

Major Contributions to Physics

Clausius reconciled the results of Joule with the theories of Sadi Carnot by abandoning the idea that heat Eric Weisstein's World of Physics was conserved. He stated formally the equivalence of heat Eric Weisstein's World of Physics and work Eric Weisstein's World of Physics (First Law of Thermodynamics Eric Weisstein's World of Physics) and developed the concept of entropy Eric Weisstein's World of Physics (which he named in 1865) to explain the directionality of physical processes. He discovered the fact that entropy Eric Weisstein's World of Physics can never decrease in a physical process and can only remain constant in a reversible process, a result which became known as the Second Law of Thermodynamics Eric Weisstein's World of Physics.

Summary of Research

Clausius developed the kinetic theory of gases. In "Über die Art der Bewegung welche wir Wärme nennen" ("On the Kind of Motion which we Call Heat" (1857), he provided a full account of the kinetic theory of molecular motions. This was the first systematic treatment of the kinetic theory. It used probabilistic arguments, introduced the concept of mean free path, and correlated temperature Eric Weisstein's World of Physics and velocity. Eric Weisstein's World of Math Clausius resolved this paradox of Buys-Ballot by explaining the motion of particles in terms of a random walk Eric Weisstein's World of Math resulting from many collisions. Clausius also coined the word "virial" used in the virial equations.

Citations

"Clausius Biography." MacTutor History of Mathematics. N.p., n.d. Web. 5 May 2015. <http://www-history.mcs.st-and.ac.uk/Biographies/Clausius.html>.

"Clausius, Rudolf (1822-1888) -- from Eric Weisstein's World of Scientific Biography." ScienceWorld. N.p., n.d. Web. 5 May 2015. <http://scienceworld.wolfram.com/biography/Clausius.html>.

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