Heinrich Hertz

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Heinrich Rudolf Hertz (February 22, 1857 – January 1, 1894) was a German physicist who clarified and expanded the electromagnetic theory of light that had been put forth by Maxwell. He was the first to satisfactorily demonstrate the existence of electromagnetic waves by building an apparatus to produce and detect VHF or UHF radio waves.



Early years

Hertz was born in Hamburg, Germany, into a prosperous and cultured Hanseatic family. His father, Gustav Ferdinand Hertz, was a writer and later a senator. His mother was the former Anna Elisabeth Pfefferkorn. He had three younger brothers and one younger sister.[1]

While studying at the Gelehrtenschule des Johanneums in Hamburg, he showed an aptitude for sciences as well as languages, learning Arabic and Sanskrit. He studied sciences and engineering in the German cities of Dresden, Munich and Berlin, where he studied under Gustav R. Kirchhoff and Hermann von Helmholtz.

In 1880, Hertz obtained his PhD from the University of Berlin; and remained for post-doctoral study under Helmholtz.

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