READ Famous Physicists from Germany

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List of notable or famous physicists from Germany, with bios and photos, including the top physicists born in Germany and even some popular physicists who immigrated to Germany. If you're trying to find out the names of famous German physicists then this list is the perfect resource for you. These physicists are among the most prominent in their field, and information about each well-known physicist from Germany is included when available.

List is made up of people like Albert Einstein and Rudolf Peierls.

This historic physicists from Germany list can help answer the questions "Who are some German physicists of note?" and "Who are the most famous physicists from Germany?" These prominent physicists of Germany may or may not be currently alive, but what they all have in common is that they're all respected German physicists.

Use this list of renowned German physicists to discover some new physicists that you aren't familiar with. Don't forget to share this list by clicking one of the social media icons at the top or bottom of the page. 

1
Albert Einstein is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 76 (1879-1955) Albert Einstein was a German-born theoretical physicist. Einstein's work is also known for its influence on the philosophy of science. He developed the general theory of relativity, one of the ...more

2
Angela Merkel is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
age 63 Angela Merkel is the current Chancellor of Germany and the head of the political party CDU in Germany. In addition to being the first female German Chanchellor, she is also considered by Forbes ...more

3
Robert Oppenheimer is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 63 (1904-1967) Julius Robert Oppenheimer was an American theoretical physicist and professor of physics at the University of California, Berkeley. He is among the persons who are often called the "father ...more

4
Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 70 (1646-1716) Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz was a German polymath and philosopher. He occupies a prominent place in the history of mathematics and the history of philosophy. Most scholars believe Leibniz ...more

5
Heinrich Hertz is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 37 (1857-1894) Heinrich Rudolf Hertz was a German physicist who first conclusively proved the existence of electromagnetic waves theorized by James Clerk Maxwell's electromagnetic theory of light. Hertz proved ...more

6
Max Planck is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 89 (1858-1947) Max Karl Ernst Ludwig Planck, FRS was a German theoretical physicist who originated quantum theory, which won him the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1918. Planck made many contributions to ...more

7
Rudolf Peierls is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 88 (1907-1995) Sir Rudolf Ernst Peierls, CBE was a German-born British physicist. Rudolf Peierls had a major role in Britain's nuclear programme, but he also had a role in many modern sciences. His obituary in ...more

8
Werner Heisenberg is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 75 (1901-1976) Werner Karl Heisenberg was a German theoretical physicist and one of the key pioneers of quantum mechanics. He published his work in 1925 in a breakthrough paper. In the subsequent series of ...more

9
Carl Friedrich Gauss is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 78 (1777-1855) Johann Carl Friedrich Gauss was a German mathematician who contributed significantly to many fields, including number theory, algebra, statistics, analysis, differential geometry, geodesy, ...more

10
Wernher von Braun is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 65 (1912-1977) Wernher Magnus Maximilian, Freiherr von Braun was a German and later American aerospace engineer and space architect, but made his greatest contributions as an aerospace program manager. He was ...more

11
Reinhard Furrer is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 55 (1940-1995) Prof. Dr. Reinhard Alfred Furrer was a German physicist and astronaut. Furrer was born in Wörgl, Austria. After the end of World War II, his father was expelled from Austria. The family ...more

12
Georg Ohm is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 65 (1789-1854) Georg Simon Ohm was a German physicist and mathematician. As a school teacher, Ohm began his research with the new electrochemical cell, invented by Italian scientist Alessandro Volta. Using ...more

13
Julius Edgar Lilienfeld is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 81 (1882-1963) Julius Edgar Lilienfeld was an Austro-Hungarian-born American Physicist and Electronic Engineer. He was born to a Jewish family in Lemberg Austria-Hungary and moved to the United States in the ...more

14
Ernst Messerschmid is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
age 72 Prof. Dr. Ernst Willi Messerschmid is a German physicist and former astronaut. Born in Reutlingen, Germany, Messerschmid finished the Technisches Gymnasium in Stuttgart in 1965. After two years ...more

15
Hans Bethe is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 99 (1906-2005) Hans Albrecht Bethe was a German and American nuclear physicist who, in addition to making important contributions to astrophysics, quantum electrodynamics and solid-state physics, won the 1967 ...more

16
Ulf Merbold is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
age 76 Dr. Ulf Dietrich Merbold is the first West German citizen and second German native to have flown in space. He is also the first member of the European Space Agency Astronaut Corps to participate ...more

17
Hans Schlegel is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
age 66 Hans Wilhelm Schlegel is a German physicist, an ESA astronaut, and a veteran of two NASA Space Shuttle missions.

18
Gerhard Thiele is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
age 64 Dr. Gerhard Paul Julius Thiele is a German physicist and a former ESA astronaut.

19
Ulrich Walter is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
age 64 Prof. Dr. Ulrich Hans Walter is a German physicist/engineer and a former DFVLR astronaut. Walter was born in Iserlohn. After finishing secondary school there and two years in the Bundeswehr, he ...more

20
Reinhold Ewald is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
age 61 Dr. Reinhold Ewald is a German physicist and ESA astronaut.

21
Benjamin Thompson is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 61 (1753-1814) Sir Benjamin Thompson, Count Rumford, FRS was an American-born British physicist and inventor whose challenges to established physical theory were part of the 19th century revolution in ...more

22
Wilhelm Röntgen is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 78 (1845-1923) Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen was a German physicist, who, on 8 November 1895, produced and detected electromagnetic radiation in a wavelength range known as X-rays or Röntgen rays, an ...more

23
Benedict Friedlaender is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 42 (1866-1908) Benedict Friedlaender was a German Jewish sexologist, sociologist, economist, volcanologist, and physicist. Friedlaender was born in Berlin as the son of Carl Friedlaender, a professor of ...more

24
Erwin Schrödinger is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 74 (1887-1961) Erwin Rudolf Josef Alexander Schrödinger, sometimes written as Erwin Schrodinger or Erwin Schroedinger, was a Nobel Prize-winning Austrian physicist who developed a number of fundamental ...more

25
Klaus Fuchs is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 77 (1911-1988) Emil Julius Klaus Fuchs was a German-born British theoretical physicist and atomic spy who in 1950 was convicted of supplying information from the American, British, and Canadian Manhattan ...more

26
Walter H. Schottky is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 90 (1886-1976) Walter Hermann Schottky was a German physicist who played a major early role in developing the theory of electron and ion emission phenomena, invented the screen-grid vacuum tube in 1915 and the ...more

27
Max Delbrück is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 75 (1906-1981) Max Ludwig Henning Delbrück, FRS, a German–American biophysicist, helped launch the molecular biology research program in the late 1930s. He stimulated physical scientists' interest into ...more

28
Walther Bothe is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 66 (1891-1957) Walther Wilhelm Georg Bothe was a German nuclear physicist, who shared the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1954 with Max Born. In 1913, he joined the newly created Laboratory for Radioactivity at the ...more

29
Otto von Guericke is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 84 (1602-1686) Otto von Guericke was a German scientist, inventor, and politician. His major scientific achievements were the establishment of the physics of vacuums, the discovery of an experimental method ...more

30
Ernst Ruska is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 82 (1906-1988) Ernst August Friedrich Ruska was a German physicist who won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1986 for his work in electron optics, including the design of the first electron microscope.

31
Bruno Augenstein is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 82 (1923-2005) Bruno Wilhelm Augenstein was a German-born mathematician and physicist who made important contributions in space technology, ballistic missile research, satellites, antimatter, and many other

32
Gerhard Herzberg is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 95 (1904-1999) Gerhard Heinrich Friedrich Otto Julius Herzberg, PC CC FRSC FRS was a German-Canadian pioneering physicist and physical chemist, who won the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1971, "for his ...more

33
Mileva Marić is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 73 (1875-1948) Mileva Marić was a Serbian physicist. She was the only woman among Albert Einstein's fellow students at the Zurich Polytechnic. They developed a relationship and had a daughter before their ...more

34
Gustav Kirchhoff is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 63 (1824-1887) Gustav Robert Kirchhoff was a German physicist who contributed to the fundamental understanding of electrical circuits, spectroscopy, and the emission of black-body radiation by heated objects. ...more

35
Adolf Eugen Fick is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 72 (1829-1901) Adolf Eugen Fick was a German-born physician and physiologist.

36
Konrad Dannenberg is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 97 (1912-2009) Konrad Dannenberg was a German-American rocket pioneer and member of the German rocket team brought to the United States after World War II.

37
Leó Szilárd is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 66 (1898-1964) Leó Szilárd was a Hungarian-American physicist and inventor. He conceived the nuclear chain reaction in 1933, patented the idea of a nuclear reactor with Enrico Fermi, and in late ...more

38
Ernst Stuhlinger is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 95 (1913-2008) Ernst Stuhlinger was a German-born American atomic, electrical, and rocket scientist. After being brought to the United States as part of Operation Paperclip, he developed guidance systems with ...more

39
Walter Gordon is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Walter Gordon Dec. at 46 (1893-1939) Walter Gordon was a German theoretical physicist.

40
Hans von Ohain is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 87 (1911-1998) Hans Joachim Pabst von Ohain was a German engineer, and designer of the first operational jet engine. His first design ran in March 1937, and it was one of his engines that powered the first ...more

41
Hans Geiger is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 63 (1882-1945) Johannes "Hans" Wilhelm Geiger was a German physicist. He is perhaps best known as the co-inventor of the Geiger counter and for the Geiger–Marsden experiment which discovered the ...more

42
Willy Ley is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 63 (1906-1969) Willy Ley was a German-American science writer, spaceflight advocate, and historian of science who helped popularize rocketry, spaceflight, and natural history in both Germany and the United ...more

43
Krafft Arnold Ehricke is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 67 (1917-1984) Krafft Arnold Ehricke was a German rocket-propulsion engineer and advocate for space colonization.

44
Ernst R. G. Eckert is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 100 (1904-2004) Ernst Rudolph Georg Eckert was a scientist who advanced the film cooling technique for aeronautical engines. He earned his Diplom Ingenieur and doctorate in 1927 and 1931, respectively, and ...more

45
Henry Margenau is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 96 (1901-1997) Henry Margenau was a German-U.S. physicist, and philosopher of science.

46
Arthur Schuster is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 83 (1851-1934) Sir Franz Arthur Friedrich Schuster FRS FRSE was a German-born British physicist known for his work in spectroscopy, electrochemistry, optics, X-radiography and the application of harmonic ...more

47
Hermann Oberth is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 95 (1894-1989) Hermann Julius Oberth was an Austro-Hungarian-born German physicist and engineer. He is considered one of the founding fathers of rocketry and astronautics.

48
Georg Wilhelm Richmann is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Georg Wilhelm Richmann Dec. at 42 (1711-1753) Georg Wilhelm Richmann was a German physicist who lived in Russia. He was born into a Baltic German family in Pernau in what had been Swedish Livonia but later became part of Imperial Russia as ...more

49
Julius Plücker is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 67 (1801-1868) Julius Plücker was a German mathematician and physicist. He made fundamental contributions to the field of analytical geometry and was a pioneer in the investigations of cathode rays that ...more

50
Francis Simon is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list Famous Physicists from Germany
Dec. at 63 (1893-1956) Sir Francis Simon, was a German and later British physical chemist and physicist who devised the method, and confirmed its feasibility, of separating the isotope Uranium-235 and thus made a ...more