Anders Jonas Ångström (1814-1874)

Swedish astronomer and physicist. The first to discover the presence of hydrogen in the sun and one of the developers of the science of spectroscopy. Proposed the unit ångström, 1Å = 1*10-10 m, for measurement of the wavelengths of light, and it was later internationally accepted and named after him.

Anders Jonas Ångström was born in a small village in the middle of Sweden in 1814, as the son of a country minister. He came to the university of Uppsala in 1833, and got a doctorate in physics in 1839. In 1858 he became a professor of physics. He took an interest in many different subjects, such as heat transfer and the Earth's magnetism, but it is for his works in spectroscopy that he is best known.

In 1868 he published Recherches sur le spectre solaire with detailed measurements of more than 1000 emission lines of the sun, including the Fraunhofer lines. He was also the first to study the spectrum of the aurora borealis.

His son, Knut Johan Ångström (1857-1910), also studied at Uppsala university and became a professor of physics there in 1896. He did research on the solar radiation, most notably on the solar constant. He also studied the absorption in the infrared spectrum of the sun's radiation caused by water, carbon dioxide, and ozone.

In Swedish, the pronunciation of Ångström will be something along these lines:
Å... - A short vowel pronounced like the O in "for"; not a diphthong
... ng... - like in "thing"
... str.... - each letter is heard, including the R almost like in Scottish
.... ö... - a bit like the EA in "earn", also this wovel is short
... m. - m.
So the whole of it will be something like Oh-ngstr-eah-m, and we can all wonder why he didn't have an easy name like Svensson instead, or maybe Steamstream which would be the english translation of the name.


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