Carl Ramsauer

Carl Wilhelm Ramsauer ( born February 6, 1879 in Oldenburg, † December 24, 1955 in Berlin) was a German physicist. In 1920 he discovered Ramsauer effect is considered the first experimental indication of the wave nature of the electron.


Ramsauer comes from a Oldenburger pastor and educator and family attended the Old Grammar School Oldenburg. He studied mathematics and physics in Munich, Tübingen, Berlin, and last Kiel, where he received his doctorate in 1903. From 1902 to 1906 he worked at the Imperial Torpedo laboratory in Kiel and then at the Radiological Institute in Heidelberg, which was led by Nobel laureates Philipp Lenard. He habilitated in 1909 and in 1915 was appointed associate professor. In 1920 he discovered the unusual classical perspective effect that slow electrons can penetrate a gas better than fast electrons. It was the first experimental indication of the wave nature of the electron, which could be interpreted correctly only in 1924 with the thesis of the matter waves of de Louis de Broglie. Ramsauer studies were of great importance for the development of quantum mechanics and left as Ramsauer effect in the history of physics a.

In 1921 he was appointed professor of experimental physics at the Technical University of Gdansk and went in 1928 to the founding of AEG central research laboratory in Berlin. He took his students with serious fractures, who headed the physical laboratory, where in 1939 developed the electrostatic electron microscope. Under Ramsauer line was built in the years of war the leading in the infrared and missile - technology Research Institute, of which the AEG Group benefited even after the war. In memory of the merits of Carl Ramsauer 1988, the Carl- Ramsauer Prize was launched.

1941 elected him the German Physical Society as their chairman. After he already was an honorary professor at the Technical University of Berlin in 1931, he was appointed as a full professor in 1945. The last years of his life he devoted himself to the improvement of physics education and dealt with the history of physics. He died in 1955 in Berlin. His grave is located in Paulinenaue in the Havel country.