Léon Foucault

By: Tabb Shea

Who Exactly was Léon Foucault?

Léon Foucault was a very important French scientist that modeled the Earth's rotation and taught us how to watch the world spin. Foucault turned 194 on September 18th, 2013 but of course he actually hasn't lived that long considering that he was born in the year 1819. Foucault died on February 11th, 1868 in France were he had lived his whole life. Foucault is known for his invention of the Foucault pendulum which demonstrated the rotation of the Earth. Foucault studied medicine but before he became interested in physics. Foucault also was an assistant for a bacteriologist named Alfred Donne and he teamed up with a physicist named Hippolyte Fizeau to investigate the intensity of the sun. Foucault's inventions were very significant to the field of Earth Science because they gave us a better understand of whats going on in the world around us.

What is the Foucault Pendulum?

Foucault's Pendulum is widely known as a demonstration of the Earth's rotation. Pendulums like Foucault's are made by attaching a heavy weigh to a long cable or string and then setting it in motion very carefully. Soon enough, it will change its direction and become in sync with our rotating planet.

Fun Facts!

  • Foucault's full name was Jean Bernard Léon Foucault
  • Foucault was 48 when he died
  • The reason he stopped studying medicine was because he didn't like blood