Albert Einstein was a famous scientist who completely changed the way that people saw our world and the universe. Einstein created many theories which proved that things like gravity, light, energy and matter were connected with each other. At first, very few scientists could understand Einstein’s theories but as time passed other scientists showed that he was correct.
Albert Einstein was born in Ulm, Germany in 1879 and grew up in Munich. He wasn’t a good student at school and only did things he was interested in, like science and mathematics. At a very early age young Albert started wondering about the mysteries of the universe.
After school Einstein went to Switzerland and tried to become a teacher there, but he couldn’t find a job. He went to work at the Swiss patent office in Bern where he studied what other people had invented.
After divorce from his first wife, a classmate of his, Albert went to Berlin where he married his cousin Elsa. He
lived in Berlin for a long time and there he developed many of his scientific theories. Einstein became so well known that he was invited to universities around the world to talk about his discoveries. In 1921 he received the Nobel Prize for Physics.
In the meantime things were starting to change in Germany. Einstein was against the Nazis and their ideas of controlling the world and killing Jews. The Nazis, in return, hated him and his theories and they burned most of his books.
Einstein decided to leave Germany and go to the United States. When World War II broke out in 1939 Einstein discovered that German scientists were working on a bomb that could kill thousands of people. He wrote a letter to the American president to warn him and suggested that the Americans start building one too.
In 1941 the American government started the Manhattan project which led to the construction of the atomic bomb. Two of these bombs were dropped over Hiroshima and Nagasaki to end the war against Japan. Einstein was horrified when he heard the news. He wanted the world to use atomic energy for peaceful purposes.
For the last twenty years of his life, Einstein lived in Princeton where he continued his scientific work. He died on April 18, 1955.
One of the most famous equations
ever written came from Albert Einstein: E = mc 2. Energy is mass times the squared speed of light. This equation shows that mass can be turned to energy. Because the speed of light square is such a high number even a small amount of mass can be turned into a lot of energy.
This means, for example, that there is enough energy in a glass of water to give power to a city like London for a whole week. The problem is how to get the energy out of the mass. This equation led to the building of the atomic bomb. The first bomb only had 0.6 grams of mass but scientist turned it into enough energy to destroy a whole city.
Einstein also thought that space and time were closely related to each other. He thought that there were not three dimensions to objects but four-the fourth one was time. Other scientists, who continued his work, claimed that it is possible to travel into the past and into the future. Black holes might be tunnels that could take you back and forth in time.
According to Einstein all objects followed curved paths and get attracted by the gravity of an object. Time would pass more slowly if you are close to a very large object like a planet. This means that the clock of a plane goes faster than a clock at an airport because the plane is farther away from the earth.