Niels Bohr

Atomic Structure and Quantum Theory

Personal Life

Niels Bohr was born in Copenhagen, Denmark on October 7, 1885. He had two siblings Jenny and Harald. Niels parents were Christian Bohr, a professor of physiology, and Ellen Adler Bohr. In 1903 Bohr enrolled as an undergraduate at Copenhagen University, where he majored in physics. In April 1909 Harald, Neils' younger brother, earned his master's degree, nine months later Niels earned his master's degree. In 1910 Bohr met Margrethe Nørlund, sister of the mathematician Niels Erik Nørlund. Margrethe and Niels had six sons, Christian, Harald, Aage, Hans, Erik and Ernest. Christian died in a boating accident in 1934 and Harald died from childhood meningitis.

Niels died on November 18, 1962 at the age of 77, due to heart failure.


  • Niels proposed the idea that electrons could drop from a high-energy orbit to a lower one in turn emitting a quantum of discrete energy.
  • Niels was a Danish physicist and philosopher.
  • Played a big role in the quantum theory and atomic structure.
  • Won a Nobel Prize in physics in 1922.
  • Developed the Bohr model of an atom.
  • Founded the Institute of Theoretical Physics.
  • Helped refugees from nazism in the 1930's.
  • Element number 107, Bohrium (Bh) is named after him.