Werner Heisenberg (5 Dec, 1901 - 1 Feb, 1976)

Timeline created by MacPherson
  • Werner Heisenberg Born

    Werner Heisenberg was born at Wurzburg
  • Physics Education Begins

    Physics Education Begins
    After completing a classical education at the Maximilians Gymnasium in Munich, Heisenberg begins his formal physics education under Arnold Sommerfeld at the University of Munich. Lustig, Harry. "The Life and Times of Werner Hesienberg." Phys. Perspect. 12 (2010) 470–496
  • Greatest Influencer Met

    Greatest Influencer Met
    Heisenberg met the man who exerted the greatest influence on his work, Niels Bohr, in Gottingen in 1922. Lustig, Harry. "The Life and Times of Werner Hesienberg." Phys. Perspect. 12 (2010) 470–496
  • Theory of Quantum Mechanics

    With a Rockefeller Grant, Heisenberg spent two years working at the University of Copenhagen with Niels Bohr, culminating in the publishing of his theory of Quantum Mechanics at the age of 23 in the September issue of Zeitschrift fur Physik.
  • Uncertainty Proposed

    Uncertainty Proposed
    Heisenberg proposed his most celebrated work, the Uncertainty Principle.
    “The more precisely we determine the position, the more imprecise is the determination of momentum in this instant and vice versa.’’ (Cassidy 161)
    Important to note his use of the German word for “Imprecision”, not “Uncertainty”. While mathematically justified, it has led to confusion over the meaning of the principle. (Lustig 476) Uncertainty Principle Explained
  • Philisophical Implications

    Through his proposal of the Uncertainty Principle, Heisenberg also made a profound philosophical conclusion – that causal determinism is impossible since it requires the exact knowledge of both position and momentum as initial conditions. This conclusion became the viewpoint of many leading physicists such as Einstein and Shrodinger. (Beyler) Beyler, Richard “Werner Heisenberg, German Physicist and Philosopher” Encyclopedia Britannica
  • More implications

    He posits in his introduction to the Uncertainty Principle that the assumption of Causality, that we can know the present precisely, is false, therefore the conclusion that the future can be predicted is also false. According to Heisenberg, even in principle, we cannot know the present in all detail (Heisenberg, 197)
  • Nobel Prize Awarded

    For his theory of Quantum Mechanics, Heisenberg was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1932, announced and awarded in 1933 in a ceremony alongside Dirac and Shrodinger.
  • Death

    Death
    Werner Heisenberg died in Munich
  • Work Cited

    Beyler, Richard “Werner Heisenberg, German Physicist and Philosopher” Encyclopedia Britannica Lustig, Harry “The Life and Times of Werner Heisenberg” Cassidy, David “Beyond Uncertainty: Heisenberg, Quantum Physics, and the Bomb” Heisenberg, Werner. "Über den anschaulichen Inhalt der quantentheoretischen Kinematik und Mechanik" "Nobel Lectures, Physics 1922-1941" Elsevier Publishing Company, Amsterdam, 1965