Portrait of James Clerk Maxwell
Image digitized by J.C. Max, Inc. from engraving by G.J. Stoddard from photograph by Fergus of Greenock appearing in "The Life of James Clerk Maxwell" by L. Campbell & W. Garnett (published in 1882).
James Clerk Maxwell
James Clerk Maxwell was a Scottish physicist who lived between 1831-1879. He studied Saturn's rings and suggested that they were composed of solid particles. This theory was confirmed 100 years later by the Voyager 1 space probe.
Maxwell is most famous for his equations linking electricity and magnetism, and his belief that electromagnetism moved through space in waves. His revolutionary work lead to the development of quantum physics in the early 1900's and to Einstein's theory of relativity.
Maxwell also described the properties of gas molecules using statistics. His improvements to the kinetic theory of gases included showing that temperature and heat are caused only by molecular movement.
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