Georg Joos

Georg Joos

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Georg Jakob Christof Joos (25 May 1894 in Bad Urach
Bad Urach
Bad Urach is a town in the district of Reutlingen, Baden-Württemberg, Germany. It is situated 14 km east of Reutlingen, at the foot of the Swabian Alb, and is known for its spa and therapeutic bath.-History:...

, Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

 – 20 May 1959 in Munich
Munich
Munich The city's motto is "" . Before 2006, it was "Weltstadt mit Herz" . Its native name, , is derived from the Old High German Munichen, meaning "by the monks' place". The city's name derives from the monks of the Benedictine order who founded the city; hence the monk depicted on the city's coat...

, Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

) was a German theoretical physicist. He wrote Lehrbuch der theoretischen Physik, first published in 1932 and one of the most influential theoretical physics textbooks of the 20th Century.

Education


Joos began his higher education in 1912 at the Technische Hochschule
Technische Hochschule
Technische Hochschule is what an Institute of Technology used to be called in German-speaking countries, as well as in the Netherlands, before most of them changed their name to Technische Universität or Technische Universiteit in the 1970s and in the...

 Stuttgart. He then went to study at the Eberhard Karls University of Tübingen
Eberhard Karls University of Tübingen
Eberhard Karls University, Tübingen is a public university located in the city of Tübingen, Baden-Württemberg, Germany. It is one of Germany's oldest universities, internationally noted in medicine, natural sciences and the humanities. In the area of German Studies it has been ranked first among...

, where he received his doctorate in 1920 under C. Füchtbauer.

Career


After receipt of his doctorate, Joos became a teaching assistant to Jonathan Zenneck
Jonathan Zenneck
Jonathan Adolf Wilhelm Zenneck was a physicist and electrical engineer. Zenneck was born in Ruppertshofen, Württemberg. Zenneck contributed to researches in radio circuit performance and to the scientific and educational contributions to the literature of the pioneer radio art...

 at the Technische Hochschule Munich
Technical University of Munich
The Technische Universität München is a research university with campuses in Munich, Garching, and Weihenstephan...

. In 1922, he became a Privatdozent
Privatdozent
Privatdozent or Private lecturer is a title conferred in some European university systems, especially in German-speaking countries, for someone who pursues an academic career and holds all formal qualifications to become a tenured university professor...

 there.

In 1924, he was appointed extraordinarius professor at the Friedrich Schiller University of Jena
Friedrich Schiller University of Jena
Friedrich Schiller University of Jena , is a public research university located in Jena, Thuringia, Germany....

, where he lectured on the theory of electrons and the theory of relativity
Theory of relativity
The theory of relativity, or simply relativity, encompasses two theories of Albert Einstein: special relativity and general relativity. However, the word relativity is sometimes used in reference to Galilean invariance....

. In 1928, he was appointed ordinarius professor, as successor of Felix Auerbach. In the late 1920s, at the industrial firm Zeisswerke Jena, he reproduced the Michelson–Morley experiment with more refined equipment and confirmed the original results.

Before the publication of Arnold Sommerfeld’s
Arnold Sommerfeld
Arnold Johannes Wilhelm Sommerfeld was a German theoretical physicist who pioneered developments in atomic and quantum physics, and also educated and groomed a large number of students for the new era of theoretical physics...

 six-volume Vorlesungen über theoretische Physik in the 1940’s, Lehrbuch der theoretischen Physik by Joos, first published in 1932, was probably one of the most important books on theoretical physics in the 20th Century.

In 1933, shortly after Adolf Hitler
Adolf Hitler
Adolf Hitler was an Austrian-born German politician and the leader of the National Socialist German Workers Party , commonly referred to as the Nazi Party). He was Chancellor of Germany from 1933 to 1945, and head of state from 1934 to 1945...

 became Chancellor, the Law for the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service
Law for the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service
The Law for the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service , also known as Civil Service Law, Civil Service Restoration Act, and Law to Re-establish the Civil Service, was a law passed by the National Socialist regime on April 7, 1933, two months after Adolf...

 was passed, which resulted in resignations and emigrations of many Jewish physicists, one of them was James Franck
James Franck
James Franck was a German Jewish physicist and Nobel laureate.-Biography:Franck was born to Jacob Franck and Rebecca Nachum Drucker. Franck completed his Ph.D...

, who was director of the Second Physics Institute at the Georg-August University of Göttingen
Georg-August University of Göttingen
The University of Göttingen , known informally as Georgia Augusta, is a university in the city of Göttingen, Germany.Founded in 1734 by King George II of Great Britain and the Elector of Hanover, it opened for classes in 1737. The University of Göttingen soon grew in size and popularity...

. In 1935, an ordinance related to the Civil Services act, the Law on the Retirement and Transfer of Professors as a Result of the Reorganization of the German System of Higher Education, was used to forcibly transfer Joos to Göttingen to fill Frank’s position as ordinarius professor and director of the Second Physics Institute.

In the spring of 1936, Werner Heisenberg
Werner Heisenberg
Werner Karl Heisenberg was a German theoretical physicist who made foundational contributions to quantum mechanics and is best known for asserting the uncertainty principle of quantum theory...

, Hans Geiger, and Max Wien
Max Wien
Max Wien was a German physicist and the director of the Institute of Physics at the University of Jena. He was born in Königsberg, Prussia.Wien studied under Helmholtz and Kundt. He invented the "Löschfunkensender" during the years 1906 to 1909 and the Wien bridge in 1891...

 sent a petition to the Reich Minister for Education at the Reichserziehungsministerium
Reichserziehungsministerium
The Reichserziehungsministerium was officially known as the Reichsministerium für Wissenschaft, Erziehung und Volksbildung .-Background:...

 (REM, Reich Education Ministry). The petition was sent out of concern for the debilitating effects of the attacks on theoretical physics
Theoretical physics
Theoretical physics is a branch of physics which employs mathematical models and abstractions of physics to rationalize, explain and predict natural phenomena...

 by the supporters of Deutsche Physik
Deutsche Physik
Deutsche Physik or Aryan Physics was a nationalist movement in the German physics community in the early 1930s against the work of Albert Einstein, labeled "Jewish Physics"...

, which was both anti-Semitic and anti-theoretical physics, especially including quantum mechanics
Quantum mechanics
Quantum mechanics, also known as quantum physics or quantum theory, is a branch of physics providing a mathematical description of much of the dual particle-like and wave-like behavior and interactions of energy and matter. It departs from classical mechanics primarily at the atomic and subatomic...

. Joos was a supporting signatory on the petition.

Based on the results of an experiment in which uranium
Uranium
Uranium is a silvery-white metallic chemical element in the actinide series of the periodic table, with atomic number 92. It is assigned the chemical symbol U. A uranium atom has 92 protons and 92 electrons, of which 6 are valence electrons...

 was bombarded with neutrons, conducted in December 1938 by Otto Hahn
Otto Hahn
Otto Hahn FRS was a German chemist and Nobel laureate, a pioneer in the fields of radioactivity and radiochemistry. He is regarded as "the father of nuclear chemistry". Hahn was a courageous opposer of Jewish persecution by the Nazis and after World War II he became a passionate campaigner...

 and Fritz Strassmann
Fritz Strassmann
Friedrich Wilhelm "Fritz" Strassmann was a German chemist who, with Otto Hahn in 1938, identified barium in the residue after bombarding uranium with neutrons, which led to the interpretation of their results as being from nuclear fission...

 at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Chemistry, Hahn conveyed their results to his former colleague Lise Meitner
Lise Meitner
Lise Meitner FRS was an Austrian-born, later Swedish, physicist who worked on radioactivity and nuclear physics. Meitner was part of the team that discovered nuclear fission, an achievement for which her colleague Otto Hahn was awarded the Nobel Prize...

. Meitner and her nephew, Otto Robert Frisch
Otto Robert Frisch
Otto Robert Frisch , Austrian-British physicist. With his collaborator Rudolf Peierls he designed the first theoretical mechanism for the detonation of an atomic bomb in 1940.- Overview :...

, correctly interpreted the data and coined the term fission
Nuclear fission
In nuclear physics and nuclear chemistry, nuclear fission is a nuclear reaction in which the nucleus of an atom splits into smaller parts , often producing free neutrons and photons , and releasing a tremendous amount of energy...

. In April 1939, Joos, after hearing a paper by Wilhelm Hanle
Wilhelm Hanle
Wilhelm Hanle was a German experimental physicist. He is known for the Hanle effect. During World War II, he made contributions to the German nuclear energy project, also known as the Uranium Club...

, conveyed to the Reichserziehungsministerium
Reichserziehungsministerium
The Reichserziehungsministerium was officially known as the Reichsministerium für Wissenschaft, Erziehung und Volksbildung .-Background:...

 the implications of Hahn’s experiment and the potential military applications of uranium research.

Due to the academic policies of the National Socialists in general, and specifically the Nationalsozialistischer Deutscher Dozentenbund (NSDDB, National Socialist German University Lecturers League) at universities, Joos departed academia in 1941. He became the chief physicist at Zeisswerke Jena, where he also participated on the management board. He remained there until shortly after the end of World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

, when, in September 1946, he was appointed as ordinarius professor of experimental physics and director of the physics department at the Technische Hochschule Munich
Technical University of Munich
The Technische Universität München is a research university with campuses in Munich, Garching, and Weihenstephan...

; he succeeded Rudolf Tomaschek
Rudolf Tomaschek
Rudolf Karl Anton Tomaschek was a German experimental physicist. His scientific efforts included work on phosphorescence, fluorescence, and gravitation. Tomaschek was a supporter of deutsche Physik, which resulted in his suspension from his university posts after World War II...

, who had been suspended. For the academic years 1947 to 1949, Joos was visiting professor at Boston University
Boston University
Boston University is a private research university located in Boston, Massachusetts. With more than 4,000 faculty members and more than 31,000 students, Boston University is one of the largest private universities in the United States and one of Boston's largest employers...

.

Internal Report


The following was published in Kernphysikalische Forschungsberichte
Kernphysikalische Forschungsberichte
Kernphysikalische Forschungsberichte was an internal publication of the German Uranverein, which was initiated under the Heereswaffenamt in 1939; in 1942, supervision of the Uranverein was turned over to the Reichsforschungsrat under the Reichserziehungsministerium...

(Research Reports in Nuclear Physics), an internal publication of the German Uranverein
German nuclear energy project
The German nuclear energy project, , was an attempted clandestine scientific effort led by Germany to develop and produce the atomic weapons during the events involving the World War II...

. Reports in this publication were classified Top Secret, they had very limited distribution, and the authors were not allowed to keep copies. The reports were confiscated under the Allied Operation Alsos
Operation Alsos
Operation Alsos was an effort at the end of World War II by the Allies , branched off from the Manhattan Project, to investigate the German nuclear energy project, seize German nuclear resources, materials and personnel to further American research and to prevent their capture by the Soviets, and...

 and sent to the United States Atomic Energy Commission
United States Atomic Energy Commission
The United States Atomic Energy Commission was an agency of the United States government established after World War II by Congress to foster and control the peace time development of atomic science and technology. President Harry S...

 for evaluation. In 1971, the reports were declassified and returned to Germany. The reports are available at the Karlsruhe Nuclear Research Center and the American Institute of Physics
American Institute of Physics
The American Institute of Physics promotes science, the profession of physics, publishes physics journals, and produces publications for scientific and engineering societies. The AIP is made up of various member societies...

.
  • Georg Joos Georg Joos to Army Ordinance G-46 (29 March 1940)

Books

  • Georg Joos, Ernst Angerer, and Johannes Stark
    Johannes Stark
    Johannes Stark was a German physicist, and Physics Nobel Prize laureate who was closely involved with the Deutsche Physik movement under the Nazi regime.-Early years:...

    Anregung der Spektren Spektroskopische Apparate und Starkeffekt (Akademische Verlagsgesellschaft mbH, 1927)

  • Georg Joos Sammelband mit 3 Sonderdrucken aus dem Hb. der Experimentalphysik. (Akademische Verlagsgesellschaft, 1928-29)

  • Georg Joos Atome und Weltall. Ein Vortrag. (Student und Leben, Heft 3). (Jena, 1931)

  • Georg Joos Lehrbuch der theoretischen Physik (Akademische Verlagsgesellschaft, 1932, 1934, 1939, 1942, 1943, 1945, 1950, 1954, 1954, 1956, 1959, 1964, 1964, 1964, 1965, 1980)
    • Georg Joos, author and Ira M. Freeman, translator Theoretical Physics (Hafner, 1934, 1950, 1957, 1958) (Blackie and Son, 1942, 1946, 1947, 1951, 1953, 1958) (Dover, 1986, 1987)

  • Georg Joos and Theodor Kaluza Höhere Mathematik für den Praktiker (Barth, 1947, 1951, 1952, 1954, 1956, 1958, 1964)

  • Geog Joos, editor Physik der festen Körper. I. (Dieterich'sche Verlagsbuchhandlung, 1947)
    • Georg Joos, editor Physics of Solids. Part I. [FIAT Review of German Science 1939-1946, Physics of Solids] (Office of Military Government for Germany Field Information Agencies, Technical, 1947)

  • Geog Joos, editor Physik der festen Körper. II. (Dieterich'sche Verlagsbuchhandlung, 1948)
    • Georg Joos, editor Physics of Solids. Part II. [FIAT Review of German Science 1939-1946, Physics of Solids] (Office of Military Government for Germany Field Information Agencies, Technical, 1948)