Dutch physicist, b. 1853, d. 1926. Heike Kamerlingh-Onnes was shown to have a high degree of skill in solving scientific problems at an early age. He was educated at the University of Groningen and the University of Heidelberg. He worked at the Polytechnicum at Delft while working on his doctorate and at Leyden University after obtaining his degree.

Kamerlingh-Onnes' thesis focused on Foucault's pendulum experiment, and the large group of problems to which it belongs. It was used to prove rotational movement of the Earth. He also published papers on the kinetic theory of liquids, and was a strong supporter of the use of experimental physics.

One of Kamerlingh-Onnes' most important contributions was the establishment of a cryogenic laboratory, which would be used to prove van der Waals' law of corresponding states over a large range of temperatures. He succeeded in liquefying Helium in 1908, when he reached a temperature of 0.9 Kelvin.

Kamerlingh-Onnes made contributions to many other fields in physics, including radioactivity, thermodynamics, optical, magnetic and electrical phenomena, the Hall effect, resistivity, dielectric constants, and superconductivity.

He was awarded the 1913 Nobel Prize for physics

"for his investigations on the properties of matter at low temperatures which led, inter alia, to the production of liquid helium"

Back to Nobel Prizes: Physics

Researched on www.nobel.se

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