Werner Heisenberg

Werner Heisenberg

Overview
Werner Karl Heisenberg was a German theoretical physicist
Theoretical physics
Theoretical physics is a branch of physics which employs mathematical models and abstractions of physics to rationalize, explain and predict natural phenomena...

 who made foundational contributions to 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...

 and is best known for asserting the uncertainty principle
Uncertainty principle
In quantum mechanics, the Heisenberg uncertainty principle states a fundamental limit on the accuracy with which certain pairs of physical properties of a particle, such as position and momentum, can be simultaneously known...

 of quantum theory
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...

. In addition, he made important contributions to nuclear physics
Nuclear physics
Nuclear physics is the field of physics that studies the building blocks and interactions of atomic nuclei. The most commonly known applications of nuclear physics are nuclear power generation and nuclear weapons technology, but the research has provided application in many fields, including those...

, quantum field theory
Quantum field theory
Quantum field theory provides a theoretical framework for constructing quantum mechanical models of systems classically parametrized by an infinite number of dynamical degrees of freedom, that is, fields and many-body systems. It is the natural and quantitative language of particle physics and...

, and particle physics
Particle physics
Particle physics is a branch of physics that studies the existence and interactions of particles that are the constituents of what is usually referred to as matter or radiation. In current understanding, particles are excitations of quantum fields and interact following their dynamics...

.

Heisenberg, along with Max Born
Max Born
Max Born was a German-born physicist and mathematician who was instrumental in the development of quantum mechanics. He also made contributions to solid-state physics and optics and supervised the work of a number of notable physicists in the 1920s and 30s...

 and Pascual Jordan
Pascual Jordan
-Further reading:...

, set forth the matrix formulation
Matrix mechanics
Matrix mechanics is a formulation of quantum mechanics created by Werner Heisenberg, Max Born, and Pascual Jordan in 1925.Matrix mechanics was the first conceptually autonomous and logically consistent formulation of quantum mechanics. It extended the Bohr Model by describing how the quantum jumps...

 of 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...

 in 1925. Heisenberg was awarded the 1932 Nobel Prize in Physics
Nobel Prize in Physics
The Nobel Prize in Physics is awarded once a year by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. It is one of the five Nobel Prizes established by the will of Alfred Nobel in 1895 and awarded since 1901; the others are the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Nobel Prize in Literature, Nobel Peace Prize, and...

 for the creation of quantum mechanics, and its application especially to the discovery of the allotropic
Allotropy
Allotropy or allotropism is the property of some chemical elements to exist in two or more different forms, known as allotropes of these elements...

 forms of hydrogen.

Following 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...

, he was appointed director of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Physics, which was soon thereafter renamed the Max Planck Institute for Physics
Max Planck Institute for Physics
Max Planck Institute for Physics is a physics institute in Munich, Germany that specializes in High Energy Physics and Astroparticle physics. It is part of the Max-Planck-Gesellschaft and is also known as the Werner Heisenberg Institute, after its first director.It was founded as the Kaiser Wilhelm...

.
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Quotations

Every experiment destroys some of the knowledge of the system which was obtained by previous experiments.

"Critique of the Physical Concepts of the Corpuscular Theory" in The Physical Principles of the Quantum Theory (1930) as translated by Carl Eckhart and Frank C. Hoyt, p. 20; also in "The Uncertainty Principle" in The World of Mathematics : A Small Library of the Literature of Mathematics (1956) by James Roy Newman, p. 1051

An expert is someone who knows some of the worst mistakes that can be made in his subject, and how to avoid them.

Physics and Beyond : Encounters and Conversation (1971)

Quantum theory provides us with a striking illustration of the fact that we can fully understand a connection though we can only speak of it in images and parables.

Physics and Beyond : Encounters and Conversation (1971)

In general, scientific progress calls for no more than the absorption and elaboration of new ideas— and this is a call most scientists are happy to heed.

Physics and Beyond : Encounters and Conversation (1971)

There is a fundamental error in separating the parts from the whole, the mistake of atomizing what should not be atomized. Unity and complementarity constitute reality.

As quoted in Physics from Wholeness : Dynamical Totality as a Conceptual Foundation for Physical Theories (2005) by Barbara Piechocinska
Encyclopedia
Werner Karl Heisenberg was a German theoretical physicist
Theoretical physics
Theoretical physics is a branch of physics which employs mathematical models and abstractions of physics to rationalize, explain and predict natural phenomena...

 who made foundational contributions to 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...

 and is best known for asserting the uncertainty principle
Uncertainty principle
In quantum mechanics, the Heisenberg uncertainty principle states a fundamental limit on the accuracy with which certain pairs of physical properties of a particle, such as position and momentum, can be simultaneously known...

 of quantum theory
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...

. In addition, he made important contributions to nuclear physics
Nuclear physics
Nuclear physics is the field of physics that studies the building blocks and interactions of atomic nuclei. The most commonly known applications of nuclear physics are nuclear power generation and nuclear weapons technology, but the research has provided application in many fields, including those...

, quantum field theory
Quantum field theory
Quantum field theory provides a theoretical framework for constructing quantum mechanical models of systems classically parametrized by an infinite number of dynamical degrees of freedom, that is, fields and many-body systems. It is the natural and quantitative language of particle physics and...

, and particle physics
Particle physics
Particle physics is a branch of physics that studies the existence and interactions of particles that are the constituents of what is usually referred to as matter or radiation. In current understanding, particles are excitations of quantum fields and interact following their dynamics...

.

Heisenberg, along with Max Born
Max Born
Max Born was a German-born physicist and mathematician who was instrumental in the development of quantum mechanics. He also made contributions to solid-state physics and optics and supervised the work of a number of notable physicists in the 1920s and 30s...

 and Pascual Jordan
Pascual Jordan
-Further reading:...

, set forth the matrix formulation
Matrix mechanics
Matrix mechanics is a formulation of quantum mechanics created by Werner Heisenberg, Max Born, and Pascual Jordan in 1925.Matrix mechanics was the first conceptually autonomous and logically consistent formulation of quantum mechanics. It extended the Bohr Model by describing how the quantum jumps...

 of 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...

 in 1925. Heisenberg was awarded the 1932 Nobel Prize in Physics
Nobel Prize in Physics
The Nobel Prize in Physics is awarded once a year by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. It is one of the five Nobel Prizes established by the will of Alfred Nobel in 1895 and awarded since 1901; the others are the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Nobel Prize in Literature, Nobel Peace Prize, and...

 for the creation of quantum mechanics, and its application especially to the discovery of the allotropic
Allotropy
Allotropy or allotropism is the property of some chemical elements to exist in two or more different forms, known as allotropes of these elements...

 forms of hydrogen.

Following 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...

, he was appointed director of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Physics, which was soon thereafter renamed the Max Planck Institute for Physics
Max Planck Institute for Physics
Max Planck Institute for Physics is a physics institute in Munich, Germany that specializes in High Energy Physics and Astroparticle physics. It is part of the Max-Planck-Gesellschaft and is also known as the Werner Heisenberg Institute, after its first director.It was founded as the Kaiser Wilhelm...

. He was director of the institute until it was moved to 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...

 in 1958, when it was expanded and renamed the Max Planck Institute for Physics and Astrophysics
Max Planck Society
The Max Planck Society for the Advancement of Science is a formally independent non-governmental and non-profit association of German research institutes publicly funded by the federal and the 16 state governments of Germany....

.

Heisenberg was also president of the German Research Council
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft
The Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft is an important German research funding organization and the largest such organization in Europe.-Function:...

, chairman of the Commission for Atomic Physics, chairman of the Nuclear Physics Working Group, and president of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation
Alexander von Humboldt Foundation
The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation is a foundation set-up by the government of the Federal Republic and funded by the German Foreign Office, the Ministry of Education and Research, the Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development and others for the promotion of international co-operation...

.

Early years


Heisenberg was born in Würzburg
Würzburg
Würzburg is a city in the region of Franconia which lies in the northern tip of Bavaria, Germany. Located at the Main River, it is the capital of the Regierungsbezirk Lower Franconia. The regional dialect is Franconian....

, Germany to Kaspar Earnesta August Heisenberg, a secondary school teacher of classical language
Classical language
A classical language is a language with a literature that is classical. According to UC Berkeley linguist George L. Hart, it should be ancient, it should be an independent tradition that arose mostly on its own, not as an offshoot of another tradition, and it must have a large and extremely rich...

s who became Germany's only ordentlicher Professor (ordinarius professor) of medieval and modern Greek
Modern Greek
Modern Greek refers to the varieties of the Greek language spoken in the modern era. The beginning of the "modern" period of the language is often symbolically assigned to the fall of the Byzantine Empire in 1453, even though that date marks no clear linguistic boundary and many characteristic...

 studies in the university system, and his wife Annie Wecklein.

He studied physics and mathematics from 1920 to 1923 at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München and the Georg-August-Universität Göttingen. At Munich, he studied under Arnold Sommerfeld
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...

 and Wilhelm Wien
Wilhelm Wien
Wilhelm Carl Werner Otto Fritz Franz Wien was a German physicist who, in 1893, used theories about heat and electromagnetism to deduce Wien's displacement law, which calculates the emission of a blackbody at any temperature from the emission at any one reference temperature.He also formulated an...

. At Göttingen, he studied physics with Max Born
Max Born
Max Born was a German-born physicist and mathematician who was instrumental in the development of quantum mechanics. He also made contributions to solid-state physics and optics and supervised the work of a number of notable physicists in the 1920s and 30s...

 and 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...

, and he studied mathematics with David Hilbert
David Hilbert
David Hilbert was a German mathematician. He is recognized as one of the most influential and universal mathematicians of the 19th and early 20th centuries. Hilbert discovered and developed a broad range of fundamental ideas in many areas, including invariant theory and the axiomatization of...

. He received his doctorate in 1923, at Munich under Sommerfeld. He completed his Habilitation
Habilitation
Habilitation is the highest academic qualification a scholar can achieve by his or her own pursuit in several European and Asian countries. Earned after obtaining a research doctorate, such as a PhD, habilitation requires the candidate to write a professorial thesis based on independent...

 in 1924, at Göttingen under Born.

Because Sommerfeld had a sincere interest in his students and knew of Heisenberg's interest in Niels Bohr
Niels Bohr
Niels Henrik David Bohr was a Danish physicist who made foundational contributions to understanding atomic structure and quantum mechanics, for which he received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1922. Bohr mentored and collaborated with many of the top physicists of the century at his institute in...

's theories on atomic physics, Sommerfeld took Heisenberg to Göttingen to the Bohr-Festspiele (Bohr Festival) in June 1922. At the event, Bohr was a guest lecturer and gave a series of comprehensive lectures on quantum atomic physics. There, Heisenberg met Bohr for the first time, and it had a significant and continuing effect on him.

Heisenberg's doctoral thesis
Thesis
A dissertation or thesis is a document submitted in support of candidature for an academic degree or professional qualification presenting the author's research and findings...

, the topic of which was suggested by Sommerfeld, was on turbulence
Turbulence
In fluid dynamics, turbulence or turbulent flow is a flow regime characterized by chaotic and stochastic property changes. This includes low momentum diffusion, high momentum convection, and rapid variation of pressure and velocity in space and time...

; the thesis discussed both the stability of laminar flow
Laminar flow
Laminar flow, sometimes known as streamline flow, occurs when a fluid flows in parallel layers, with no disruption between the layers. At low velocities the fluid tends to flow without lateral mixing, and adjacent layers slide past one another like playing cards. There are no cross currents...

 and the nature of turbulent flow. The problem of stability was investigated by the use of the Orr–Sommerfeld equation, a fourth order linear differential equation
Linear differential equation
Linear differential equations are of the formwhere the differential operator L is a linear operator, y is the unknown function , and the right hand side ƒ is a given function of the same nature as y...

 for small disturbances from laminar flow. He briefly returned to this topic after World War II.

Heisenberg's paper on the anomalous Zeeman effect
Zeeman effect
The Zeeman effect is the splitting of a spectral line into several components in the presence of a static magnetic field. It is analogous to the Stark effect, the splitting of a spectral line into several components in the presence of an electric field...

 was accepted as his Habilitationsschrift under Max Born
Max Born
Max Born was a German-born physicist and mathematician who was instrumental in the development of quantum mechanics. He also made contributions to solid-state physics and optics and supervised the work of a number of notable physicists in the 1920s and 30s...

 at Göttingen.

In his youth he was a member and Scoutleader of the Neupfadfinder, a German Scout association
Scouting in Germany
The Scout movement in Germany consists of about 150 different associations and federations with about 260,000 Scouts and Guides.Scouting in Germany started in 1909. German Scouting later became involved with the German Youth Movement, of which the Wandervogel was a part...

 and part of the German Youth Movement
German Youth Movement
The German Youth Movement is a collective term for a cultural and educational movement that started in 1896. It consists of numerous associations of young people that focus on outdoor activities. The movement included German Scouting and the Wandervogel...

. In August 1923 Robert Honsell and Heisenberg organized a trip (Großfahrt) to Finland with a Scout group of this association from Munich.

Göttingen, Copenhagen, and Leipzig


From 1924 to 1927, Heisenberg was 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...

 at Göttingen
Göttingen
Göttingen is a university town in Lower Saxony, Germany. It is the capital of the district of Göttingen. The Leine river runs through the town. In 2006 the population was 129,686.-General information:...

. From 17 September 1924 to 1 May 1925, under an International Education Board Rockefeller Foundation
Rockefeller Foundation
The Rockefeller Foundation is a prominent philanthropic organization and private foundation based at 420 Fifth Avenue, New York City. The preeminent institution established by the six-generation Rockefeller family, it was founded by John D. Rockefeller , along with his son John D. Rockefeller, Jr...

 fellowship, Heisenberg went to do research with Niels Bohr, director of the Institute of Theoretical Physics at the University of Copenhagen
University of Copenhagen
The University of Copenhagen is the oldest and largest university and research institution in Denmark. Founded in 1479, it has more than 37,000 students, the majority of whom are female , and more than 7,000 employees. The university has several campuses located in and around Copenhagen, with the...

. He returned to Göttingen and with Max Born
Max Born
Max Born was a German-born physicist and mathematician who was instrumental in the development of quantum mechanics. He also made contributions to solid-state physics and optics and supervised the work of a number of notable physicists in the 1920s and 30s...

 and Pascual Jordan
Pascual Jordan
-Further reading:...

, over a period of about six months, developed the matrix mechanics
Matrix mechanics
Matrix mechanics is a formulation of quantum mechanics created by Werner Heisenberg, Max Born, and Pascual Jordan in 1925.Matrix mechanics was the first conceptually autonomous and logically consistent formulation of quantum mechanics. It extended the Bohr Model by describing how the quantum jumps...

 formulation of 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...

. On 1 May 1926, Heisenberg began his appointment as a university lecturer
Lecturer
Lecturer is an academic rank. In the United Kingdom, lecturer is a position at a university or similar institution, often held by academics in their early career stages, who lead research groups and supervise research students, as well as teach...

 and assistant to Bohr in Copenhagen. It was in Copenhagen, in 1927, that Heisenberg developed his uncertainty principle
Uncertainty principle
In quantum mechanics, the Heisenberg uncertainty principle states a fundamental limit on the accuracy with which certain pairs of physical properties of a particle, such as position and momentum, can be simultaneously known...

, while working on the mathematical foundations of quantum mechanics. On 23 February, Heisenberg wrote a letter to fellow physicist Wolfgang Pauli
Wolfgang Pauli
Wolfgang Ernst Pauli was an Austrian theoretical physicist and one of the pioneers of quantum physics. In 1945, after being nominated by Albert Einstein, he received the Nobel Prize in Physics for his "decisive contribution through his discovery of a new law of Nature, the exclusion principle or...

, in which he first described his new principle. In his paper on the uncertainty principle, Heisenberg used the word "Ungenauigkeit" (imprecision).

In 1927, Heisenberg was appointed ordentlicher Professor (ordinarius professor) of theoretical physics and head of the department of physics at the Universität Leipzig
University of Leipzig
The University of Leipzig , located in Leipzig in the Free State of Saxony, Germany, is one of the oldest universities in the world and the second-oldest university in Germany...

; he gave his inaugural lecture on 1 February 1928. In his first paper published from Leipzig, Heisenberg used the Pauli exclusion principle
Pauli exclusion principle
The Pauli exclusion principle is the quantum mechanical principle that no two identical fermions may occupy the same quantum state simultaneously. A more rigorous statement is that the total wave function for two identical fermions is anti-symmetric with respect to exchange of the particles...

 to solve the mystery of ferromagnetism
Ferromagnetism
Ferromagnetism is the basic mechanism by which certain materials form permanent magnets, or are attracted to magnets. In physics, several different types of magnetism are distinguished...

.

In Heisenberg's tenure at Leipzig, the quality of doctoral students, post-graduate
Postgraduate education
Postgraduate education involves learning and studying for degrees or other qualifications for which a first or Bachelor's degree generally is required, and is normally considered to be part of higher education...

 and research associates who studied and worked with Heisenberg there is attested to by the acclaim later earned by these people; at various times, they included: Erich Bagge
Erich Bagge
Erich Rudolf Bagge was a German scientist. Bagge, a student of Werner Heisenberg for his doctorate and Habilitation, was engaged in German Atomic Energy research and the German nuclear energy project during the Second World War. He worked as an Assistant at the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Institut für Physik...

, Felix Bloch
Felix Bloch
Felix Bloch was a Swiss physicist, working mainly in the U.S.-Life and work:Bloch was born in Zürich, Switzerland to Jewish parents Gustav and Agnes Bloch. He was educated there and at the Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule, also in Zürich. Initially studying engineering he soon changed to physics...

, Ugo Fano
Ugo Fano
Ugo Fano was an Italian American physicist, a leader in theoretical physics in the 20th century.- Biography :Ugo Fano was born into a wealthy Jewish family in Turin, Italy...

, Siegfried Flügge
Siegfried Flügge
Siegfried Flügge was a German theoretical physicist and made contributions to nuclear physics. He worked at the Kaiser-Wilhelm Institut für Chemie and worked in the German Uranverein...

, William Vermillion Houston
William Vermillion Houston
William Vermillion Houston was an American physicist who made contributions to spectroscopy, quantum mechanics, and solid-state physics as well as being a teacher and administrator.His family name is pronounced HOW-stun, in contrast to the pronunciation of the city of Houston in which he lived...

, Friedrich Hund
Friedrich Hund
Friedrich Hermann Hund was a German physicist from Karlsruhe known for his work on atoms and molecules.Hund worked at the Universities of Rostock, Leipzig, Jena, Frankfurt am Main, and Göttingen....

, Robert S. Mulliken
Robert S. Mulliken
Robert Sanderson Mulliken was an American physicist and chemist, primarily responsible for the early development of molecular orbital theory, i.e. the elaboration of the molecular orbital method of computing the structure of molecules. Dr. Mulliken received the Nobel Prize for chemistry in 1966...

, Rudolf Peierls
Rudolf Peierls
Sir Rudolf Ernst Peierls, CBE was a German-born British physicist. Rudolf Peierls had a major role in Britain's nuclear program, but he also had a role in many modern sciences...

, George Placzek
George Placzek
Georg Placzek was a Czech physicist.Born in Brno, Moravia, Placzek studied physics in Prague and Vienna. He worked with Hans Bethe, Edward Teller, Rudolf Peierls, Werner Heisenberg, Victor Weisskopf, Enrico Fermi, Niels Bohr, Lev Landau, Edoardo Amaldi, Emilio Segrè, Leon van Hove and many other...

, Isidor Isaac Rabi
Isidor Isaac Rabi
Isidor Isaac Rabi was a Galician-born American physicist and Nobel laureate recognized in 1944 for his discovery of nuclear magnetic resonance.-Early years:...

, Fritz Sauter
Fritz Sauter
Fritz Eduard Josef Maria Sauter was an Austrian-German physicist who worked mostly in quantum electrodynamics and solid-state physics.- Education :...

, John C. Slater
John C. Slater
John Clarke Slater was a noted American physicist who made major contributions to the theory of the electronic structure of atoms, molecules and solids. This work is of ongoing importance in chemistry, as well as in many areas of physics. He also made major contributions to microwave electronics....

, Edward Teller
Edward Teller
Edward Teller was a Hungarian-American theoretical physicist, known colloquially as "the father of the hydrogen bomb," even though he did not care for the title. Teller made numerous contributions to nuclear and molecular physics, spectroscopy , and surface physics...

, John Hasbrouck van Vleck
John Hasbrouck van Vleck
John Hasbrouck Van Vleck was an American physicist and mathematician, co-awarded the 1977 Nobel Prize in Physics, for his contributions to the understanding of the behavior of electrons in magnetic solids....

, Victor Frederick Weisskopf
Victor Frederick Weisskopf
Victor Frederick Weisskopf was an Austrian-born Jewish American theoretical physicist. He did postdoctoral work with Werner Heisenberg, Erwin Schrödinger, Wolfgang Pauli and Niels Bohr...

, Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker
Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker
Carl Friedrich Freiherr von Weizsäcker was a German physicist and philosopher. He was the longest-living member of the research team which performed nuclear research in Germany during the Second World War, under Werner Heisenberg's leadership...

, Gregor Wentzel
Gregor Wentzel
Gregor Wentzel was a German physicist known for development of quantum mechanics. Wentzel, Hendrik Kramers, and Léon Brillouin developed the Wentzel–Kramers–Brillouin approximation in 1926...

 and Clarence Zener
Clarence Zener
Clarence Melvin Zener was the American physicist who first described the property concerning the breakdown of electrical insulators. These findings were later exploited by Bell Labs in the development of the Zener diode, which was duly named after him...

.

In early 1929, Heisenberg and Pauli submitted the first of two papers laying the foundation for relativistic quantum field theory
Quantum field theory
Quantum field theory provides a theoretical framework for constructing quantum mechanical models of systems classically parametrized by an infinite number of dynamical degrees of freedom, that is, fields and many-body systems. It is the natural and quantitative language of particle physics and...

. Also in 1929, Heisenberg went on a lecture tour in the United States, Japan, China, and India.

Shortly after the discovery of the neutron
Neutron
The neutron is a subatomic hadron particle which has the symbol or , no net electric charge and a mass slightly larger than that of a proton. With the exception of hydrogen, nuclei of atoms consist of protons and neutrons, which are therefore collectively referred to as nucleons. The number of...

 by James Chadwick
James Chadwick
Sir James Chadwick CH FRS was an English Nobel laureate in physics awarded for his discovery of the neutron....

 in 1932, Heisenberg submitted the first of three papers on his neutron-proton model of the nucleus. He was awarded the 1932 Nobel Prize in Physics
Nobel Prize in Physics
The Nobel Prize in Physics is awarded once a year by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. It is one of the five Nobel Prizes established by the will of Alfred Nobel in 1895 and awarded since 1901; the others are the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Nobel Prize in Literature, Nobel Peace Prize, and...

.

In 1928, the British mathematical physicist
Mathematical physics
Mathematical physics refers to development of mathematical methods for application to problems in physics. The Journal of Mathematical Physics defines this area as: "the application of mathematics to problems in physics and the development of mathematical methods suitable for such applications and...

 P. A. M. Dirac
Paul Dirac
Paul Adrien Maurice Dirac, OM, FRS was an English theoretical physicist who made fundamental contributions to the early development of both quantum mechanics and quantum electrodynamics...

 had derived the relativistic wave equation
Dirac equation
The Dirac equation is a relativistic quantum mechanical wave equation formulated by British physicist Paul Dirac in 1928. It provided a description of elementary spin-½ particles, such as electrons, consistent with both the principles of quantum mechanics and the theory of special relativity, and...

 of quantum mechanics, which implied the existence of positive electrons, later to be named positron
Positron
The positron or antielectron is the antiparticle or the antimatter counterpart of the electron. The positron has an electric charge of +1e, a spin of ½, and has the same mass as an electron...

s. In 1932, from a cloud chamber
Cloud chamber
The cloud chamber, also known as the Wilson chamber, is a particle detector used for detecting ionizing radiation. In its most basic form, a cloud chamber is a sealed environment containing a supersaturated vapor of water or alcohol. When a charged particle interacts with the mixture, it ionizes it...

 photograph of cosmic ray
Cosmic ray
Cosmic rays are energetic charged subatomic particles, originating from outer space. They may produce secondary particles that penetrate the Earth's atmosphere and surface. The term ray is historical as cosmic rays were thought to be electromagnetic radiation...

s, the American physicist Carl David Anderson
Carl David Anderson
Carl David Anderson was an American physicist. He is best known for his discovery of the positron in 1932, an achievement for which he received the 1936 Nobel Prize in Physics, and of the muon in 1936.-Biography:...

 identified a track as having been made by a positron. In mid-1933, Heisenberg presented his theory of the positron. His thinking on Dirac's theory and further development of the theory were set forth in two papers. The first, Bemerkungen zur Diracschen Theorie des Positrons (Remarks on Dirac's theory of the positron) was published in 1934, and the second, Folgerungen aus der Diracschen Theorie des Positrons (Consequences of Dirac's Theory of the Positron), was published in 1936. In these papers Heisenberg was the first to reinterpret the Dirac equation
Dirac equation
The Dirac equation is a relativistic quantum mechanical wave equation formulated by British physicist Paul Dirac in 1928. It provided a description of elementary spin-½ particles, such as electrons, consistent with both the principles of quantum mechanics and the theory of special relativity, and...

 as a "classical" field equation for any point particle of spin ħ/2, itself subject to quantization conditions involving anti-commutators. Thus reinterpreting it as a (quantum) field equation accurately describing electrons, Heisenberg put matter on the same footing as electromagnetism: as being described by relativistic quantum field equations which allowed the possibility of particle creation and destruction.

In the early 1930s in Germany, the deutsche Physik movement was 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...

 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....

. As applied in the university environment, political factors took priority over the historically applied concept of scholarly ability, even though its two most prominent supporters were the Nobel Laureates in Physics
Nobel Prize in Physics
The Nobel Prize in Physics is awarded once a year by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. It is one of the five Nobel Prizes established by the will of Alfred Nobel in 1895 and awarded since 1901; the others are the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Nobel Prize in Literature, Nobel Peace Prize, and...

 Philipp Lenard
Philipp Lenard
Philipp Eduard Anton von Lenard , known in Hungarian as Lénárd Fülöp Eduárd Antal, was a Hungarian - German physicist and the winner of the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1905 for his research on cathode rays and the discovery of many of their properties...

 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:...

.

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...

 came to power in 1933, Heisenberg was attacked in the press as a "White Jew" by elements of the deutsche Physik (German Physics) movement for his insistence on teaching about the roles of Jewish scientists. As a result, he came under investigation by the SS. This was over an attempt to appoint Heisenberg as successor to Arnold Sommerfeld
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...

 at the University of Munich. The issue was resolved in 1938 by Heinrich Himmler
Heinrich Himmler
Heinrich Luitpold Himmler was Reichsführer of the SS, a military commander, and a leading member of the Nazi Party. As Chief of the German Police and the Minister of the Interior from 1943, Himmler oversaw all internal and external police and security forces, including the Gestapo...

, head of the SS. While Heisenberg was not chosen as Sommerfeld's successor, he was rehabilitated to the physics community during the Third Reich. Nevertheless, supporters of deutsche Physik launched vicious attacks against leading theoretical physicists, including Arnold Sommerfeld
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...

 and Heisenberg. On 29 June 1936, a National Socialist Party
National Socialist Party
Parties in various contexts have referred to themselves as National Socialist parties. Because there is no clear definition of national socialism, the term has been used to mean very different things...

 newspaper published a column attacking Heisenberg. On 15 July 1937, he was attacked in a journal of the SS. This was the beginning of what is called the Heisenberg Affair.

In mid-1936, Heisenberg presented his theory of cosmic-ray
Cosmic ray
Cosmic rays are energetic charged subatomic particles, originating from outer space. They may produce secondary particles that penetrate the Earth's atmosphere and surface. The term ray is historical as cosmic rays were thought to be electromagnetic radiation...

 showers in two papers. Four more papers appeared in the next two years.

In June 1939, Heisenberg bought a summer home for his family in Urfeld, in southern Germany. He also traveled to the United States in June and July, visiting Samuel Abraham Goudsmit
Samuel Abraham Goudsmit
Samuel Abraham Goudsmit was a Dutch-American physicist famous for jointly proposing the concept of electron spin with George Eugene Uhlenbeck in 1925.-Biography:...

, at the University of Michigan
University of Michigan
The University of Michigan is a public research university located in Ann Arbor, Michigan in the United States. It is the state's oldest university and the flagship campus of the University of Michigan...

 in Ann Arbor
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor is a city in the U.S. state of Michigan and the county seat of Washtenaw County. The 2010 census places the population at 113,934, making it the sixth largest city in Michigan. The Ann Arbor Metropolitan Statistical Area had a population of 344,791 as of 2010...

. However, Heisenberg refused an invitation to emigrate to the United States. He did not see Goudsmit again until six years later, when Goudsmit was the chief scientific advisor to the American 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...

 at the close 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...

. Ironically, Heisenberg was arrested under Operation Alsos and detained in England under Operation Epsilon
Operation Epsilon
Operation Epsilon was the codename of a program in which Allied forces near the end of World War II detained ten German scientists who were thought to have worked on Nazi Germany's nuclear program. The scientists were captured between May 1 and June 30, 1945, and interned at Farm Hall, a bugged...

.

Matrix Mechanics and the Nobel Prize



Heisenberg’s paper establishing quantum mechanics has puzzled physicists and historians. His methods assume that the reader is familiar with Kramers-Heisenberg transition probability calculations. The main new idea, noncommuting matrices, is justified only by a rejection of unobservable quantities. It introduces the non-commutative
Commutativity
In mathematics an operation is commutative if changing the order of the operands does not change the end result. It is a fundamental property of many binary operations, and many mathematical proofs depend on it...

 multiplication of matrices
Matrix (mathematics)
In mathematics, a matrix is a rectangular array of numbers, symbols, or expressions. The individual items in a matrix are called its elements or entries. An example of a matrix with six elements isMatrices of the same size can be added or subtracted element by element...

 by physical reasoning, based on the correspondence principle
Correspondence principle
In physics, the correspondence principle states that the behavior of systems described by the theory of quantum mechanics reproduces classical physics in the limit of large quantum numbers....

, despite the fact that Heisenberg was not then familiar with the mathematical theory of matrices. The path leading to these results has been reconstructed in MacKinnon, 1977, and the detailed calculations are worked out in Aitchison et al.

In Copenhagen, Heisenberg and H. Kramers collaborated on a paper on dispersion, or the scattering from atoms of radiation whose wavelength is larger than the atoms. They showed that the successful formula Kramers had developed earlier could not be based on Bohr orbits, because the transition frequencies are based on level spacings which are not constant. The frequencies which occur in the Fourier transform
Fourier transform
In mathematics, Fourier analysis is a subject area which grew from the study of Fourier series. The subject began with the study of the way general functions may be represented by sums of simpler trigonometric functions...

 of sharp classical orbits, by contrast, are equally spaced. But these results could be explained by a semi-classical Virtual State
Virtual state (physics)
The term virtual state is commonly used to refer to two different types of states in physical systems. It may refer to a very short-lived, unobservable quantum state or a real, but unstable, state...

 model: the incoming radiation excites the valence, or outer, electron to a virtual state from which it decays. In a subsequent paper Heisenberg showed that this virtual oscillator model could also explain the polarization of fluorescent radiation.

These two successes, and the continuing failure of the Bohr-Sommerfeld model
Bohr model
In atomic physics, the Bohr model, introduced by Niels Bohr in 1913, depicts the atom as a small, positively charged nucleus surrounded by electrons that travel in circular orbits around the nucleus—similar in structure to the solar system, but with electrostatic forces providing attraction,...

 to explain the outstanding problem of the anomalous Zeeman effect, led Heisenberg to use the virtual oscillator model to try to calculate spectral frequencies. The method proved too difficult to immediately apply to realistic problems, so Heisenberg turned to a simpler example, the anharmonic oscillator.

The dipole oscillator consists of a simple harmonic oscillator, which is thought of as a charged particle
Charged particle
In physics, a charged particle is a particle with an electric charge. It may be either a subatomic particle or an ion. A collection of charged particles, or even a gas containing a proportion of charged particles, is called a plasma, which is called the fourth state of matter because its...

 on a spring, perturbed by an external force, like an external charge. The motion of the oscillating charge can be expressed as a Fourier series
Fourier series
In mathematics, a Fourier series decomposes periodic functions or periodic signals into the sum of a set of simple oscillating functions, namely sines and cosines...

 in the frequency of the oscillator. Heisenberg solved for the quantum behavior by two different methods. First, he treated the system with the virtual oscillator method, calculating the transitions between the levels that would be produced by the external source.

He then solved the same problem by treating the anharmonic potential term as a perturbation to the harmonic oscillator and using the perturbation methods
Perturbation theory
Perturbation theory comprises mathematical methods that are used to find an approximate solution to a problem which cannot be solved exactly, by starting from the exact solution of a related problem...

 that he and Born had developed. Both methods led to the same results for the first and the very complicated second order correction terms. This suggested that behind the very complicated calculations lay a consistent scheme.

So Heisenberg set out to formulate these results without any explicit dependence on the virtual oscillator model. To do this, he replaced the Fourier expansions for the spatial coordinates by matrices, matrices which corresponded to the transition coefficients in the virtual oscillator method. He justified this replacement by an appeal to Bohr’s correspondence principle
Correspondence principle
In physics, the correspondence principle states that the behavior of systems described by the theory of quantum mechanics reproduces classical physics in the limit of large quantum numbers....

 and the Pauli doctrine that quantum mechanics must be limited to observables.

On 9 July, Heisenberg gave Born this paper to review and submit for publication. When Born read the paper, he recognized the formulation as one which could be transcribed and extended to the systematic language of matrices, which he had learned from his study under Jakob Rosanes
Jakob Rosanes
Jakob Rosanes was a German mathematician who worked on algebraic geometry and invariant theory. He was also a chess master....

 at Breslau University. Born, with the help of his assistant and former student Pascual Jordan
Pascual Jordan
-Further reading:...

, began immediately to make the transcription and extension, and they submitted their results for publication; the paper was received for publication just 60 days after Heisenberg's paper. A follow-on paper was submitted for publication before the end of the year by all three authors. (A brief review of Born's role in the development of the matrix mechanics
Matrix mechanics
Matrix mechanics is a formulation of quantum mechanics created by Werner Heisenberg, Max Born, and Pascual Jordan in 1925.Matrix mechanics was the first conceptually autonomous and logically consistent formulation of quantum mechanics. It extended the Bohr Model by describing how the quantum jumps...

 formulation of quantum mechanics along with a discussion of the key formula involving the non-commutivity of the probability amplitudes can be found in an article by Jeremy Bernstein, Max Born and the Quantum Theory. A detailed historical and technical account can be found in Mehra and Rechenberg's book The Historical Development of Quantum Theory. Volume 3. The Formulation of Matrix Mechanics and Its Modifications 1925–1926.)

Up until this time, matrices were seldom used by physicists; they were considered to belong to the realm of pure mathematics
Pure mathematics
Broadly speaking, pure mathematics is mathematics which studies entirely abstract concepts. From the eighteenth century onwards, this was a recognized category of mathematical activity, sometimes characterized as speculative mathematics, and at variance with the trend towards meeting the needs of...

. Gustav Mie
Gustav Mie
Gustav Adolf Feodor Wilhelm Ludwig Mie was a German physicist.-Biography:Mie was born in Rostock. From 1886 he studied mathematics and physics at the University of Rostock. In addition to his major subjects, he also attended lectures in chemistry, zoology, geology, mineralogy, astronomy as well as...

 had used them in a paper on electrodynamics in 1912 and Born had used them in his work on the lattices theory of crystals in 1921. While matrices were used in these cases, the algebra of matrices with their multiplication did not enter the picture as they did in the matrix formulation of quantum mechanics.

Born had learned matrix algebra from Rosanes, as already noted, but Born had also learned Hilbert's theory of integral equation
Integral equation
In mathematics, an integral equation is an equation in which an unknown function appears under an integral sign. There is a close connection between differential and integral equations, and some problems may be formulated either way...

s and quadratic form
Quadratic form
In mathematics, a quadratic form is a homogeneous polynomial of degree two in a number of variables. For example,4x^2 + 2xy - 3y^2\,\!is a quadratic form in the variables x and y....

s for an infinite number
Infinity
Infinity is a concept in many fields, most predominantly mathematics and physics, that refers to a quantity without bound or end. People have developed various ideas throughout history about the nature of infinity...

 of variables as was apparent from a citation by Born of Hilbert's work Grundzüge einer allgemeinen Theorie der Linearen Integralgleichungen published in 1912. Jordan, too was well equipped for the task. For a number of years, he had been an assistant to Richard Courant
Richard Courant
Richard Courant was a German American mathematician.- Life :Courant was born in Lublinitz in the German Empire's Prussian Province of Silesia. During his youth, his parents had to move quite often, to Glatz, Breslau, and in 1905 to Berlin. He stayed in Breslau and entered the university there...

 at Göttingen in the preparation of Courant and David Hilbert's
David Hilbert
David Hilbert was a German mathematician. He is recognized as one of the most influential and universal mathematicians of the 19th and early 20th centuries. Hilbert discovered and developed a broad range of fundamental ideas in many areas, including invariant theory and the axiomatization of...

 book Methoden der mathematischen Physik I, which was published in 1924. This book, fortuitously, contained a great many of the mathematical tools necessary for the continued development of quantum mechanics. In 1926, John von Neumann
John von Neumann
John von Neumann was a Hungarian-American mathematician and polymath who made major contributions to a vast number of fields, including set theory, functional analysis, quantum mechanics, ergodic theory, geometry, fluid dynamics, economics and game theory, computer science, numerical analysis,...

 became assistant to David Hilbert
David Hilbert
David Hilbert was a German mathematician. He is recognized as one of the most influential and universal mathematicians of the 19th and early 20th centuries. Hilbert discovered and developed a broad range of fundamental ideas in many areas, including invariant theory and the axiomatization of...

, and he coined the term Hilbert space
Hilbert space
The mathematical concept of a Hilbert space, named after David Hilbert, generalizes the notion of Euclidean space. It extends the methods of vector algebra and calculus from the two-dimensional Euclidean plane and three-dimensional space to spaces with any finite or infinite number of dimensions...

 to describe the algebra and analysis which were used in the development of quantum mechanics.

In 1928, Albert Einstein
Albert Einstein
Albert Einstein was a German-born theoretical physicist who developed the theory of general relativity, effecting a revolution in physics. For this achievement, Einstein is often regarded as the father of modern physics and one of the most prolific intellects in human history...

 nominated Heisenberg, Born, and Jordan for the Nobel Prize in Physics
Nobel Prize in Physics
The Nobel Prize in Physics is awarded once a year by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. It is one of the five Nobel Prizes established by the will of Alfred Nobel in 1895 and awarded since 1901; the others are the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Nobel Prize in Literature, Nobel Peace Prize, and...

, but it was not to be. The announcement of the Nobel Prize in Physics for 1932 was delayed until November 1933. It was at that time that it was announced Heisenberg had won the Prize for 1932 "for the creation of quantum mechanics, the application of which has, inter alia, led to the discovery of the allotropic forms of hydrogen" and Erwin Schrödinger
Erwin Schrödinger
Erwin Rudolf Josef Alexander Schrödinger was an Austrian physicist and theoretical biologist who was one of the fathers of quantum mechanics, and is famed for a number of important contributions to physics, especially the Schrödinger equation, for which he received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1933...

 and Paul Adrien Maurice Dirac
Paul Dirac
Paul Adrien Maurice Dirac, OM, FRS was an English theoretical physicist who made fundamental contributions to the early development of both quantum mechanics and quantum electrodynamics...

 shared the 1933 Prize "for the discovery of new productive forms of atomic theory". One can rightly ask why Born was not awarded the Prize in 1932 along with Heisenberg – Bernstein gives some speculations on this matter. One of them is related to Jordan joining the Nazi Party on 1 May 1933 and becoming a Storm Trooper
Sturmabteilung
The Sturmabteilung functioned as a paramilitary organization of the National Socialist German Workers' Party . It played a key role in Adolf Hitler's rise to power in the 1920s and 1930s...

. Hence, Jordan's Party affiliations and Jordan's links to Born may have affected Born's chance at the Prize at that time. Bernstein also notes that when Born won the Prize in 1954, Jordan was still alive, and the Prize was awarded for the statistical interpretation of quantum mechanics
Interpretation of quantum mechanics
An interpretation of quantum mechanics is a set of statements which attempt to explain how quantum mechanics informs our understanding of nature. Although quantum mechanics has held up to rigorous and thorough experimental testing, many of these experiments are open to different interpretations...

, attributable alone to Born.

Heisenberg's reaction to Born for Heisenberg receiving the Prize for 1932 and to Born for Born receiving the Prize in 1954 are also instructive in evaluating whether Born should have shared the Prize with Heisenberg. On 25 November 1933, Born received a letter from Heisenberg in which he said he had been delayed in writing due to a "bad conscience" that he alone had received the Prize "for work done in Göttingen in collaboration – you, Jordan and I." Heisenberg went on to say that Born and Jordan's contribution to quantum mechanics cannot be changed by "a wrong decision from the outside." In 1954, Heisenberg wrote an article honoring Max Planck
Max Planck
Max Karl Ernst Ludwig Planck, ForMemRS, was a German physicist who actualized the quantum physics, initiating a revolution in natural science and philosophy. He is regarded as the founder of the quantum theory, for which he received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1918.-Life and career:Planck came...

 for his insight in 1900. In the article, Heisenberg credited Born and Jordan for the final mathematical formulation of matrix mechanics and Heisenberg went on to stress how great their contributions were to quantum mechanics, which were not "adequately acknowledged in the public eye."

The deutsche Physik movement


On 1 April 1935, the eminent theoretical physicist Arnold Sommerfeld
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...

, Heisenberg's doctoral advisor at the University of Munich, achieved emeritus status. However, Sommerfeld stayed in his chair during the selection process for his successor, which took until 1 December 1939. The process was lengthy due to academic and political differences between the Munich Faculty's selection and that of the Reichserziehungsministerium
Reichserziehungsministerium
The Reichserziehungsministerium was officially known as the Reichsministerium für Wissenschaft, Erziehung und Volksbildung .-Background:...

 (REM, Reich Education Ministry.) and 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 anti-Semitic and had a bias against 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...

, especially 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...

 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 1935, the Munich Faculty drew up a list of candidates to replace Sommerfeld as ordinarius professor of theoretical physics and head of the Institute for Theoretical Physics at the University of Munich. There were three names on the list: Werner Heisenberg, who received the Nobel Prize in Physics
Nobel Prize in Physics
The Nobel Prize in Physics is awarded once a year by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. It is one of the five Nobel Prizes established by the will of Alfred Nobel in 1895 and awarded since 1901; the others are the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Nobel Prize in Literature, Nobel Peace Prize, and...

 for 1932, Peter Debye
Peter Debye
Peter Joseph William Debye FRS was a Dutch physicist and physical chemist, and Nobel laureate in Chemistry.-Early life:...

, who received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry
Nobel Prize in Chemistry
The Nobel Prize in Chemistry is awarded annually by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences to scientists in the various fields of chemistry. It is one of the five Nobel Prizes established by the will of Alfred Nobel in 1895, awarded for outstanding contributions in chemistry, physics, literature,...

 in 1936, and Richard Becker
Richard Becker
Richard Becker was a German theoretical physicist who made contributions in thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, superconductivity, and quantum electrodynamics.-Education:...

 - all former students of Sommerfeld. The Munich Faculty was firmly behind these candidates, with Heisenberg as their first choice. However, supporters of Deutsche Physik and elements in the REM had their own list of candidates and the battle dragged on for over four years. During this time, Heisenberg came under vicious attack by the Deutsche Physik supporters. One attack was published in Das Schwarze Korps, the newspaper of the Schutzstaffel
Schutzstaffel
The Schutzstaffel |Sig runes]]) was a major paramilitary organization under Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party. Built upon the Nazi ideology, the SS under Heinrich Himmler's command was responsible for many of the crimes against humanity during World War II...

 (SS), headed by Heinrich Himmler
Heinrich Himmler
Heinrich Luitpold Himmler was Reichsführer of the SS, a military commander, and a leading member of the Nazi Party. As Chief of the German Police and the Minister of the Interior from 1943, Himmler oversaw all internal and external police and security forces, including the Gestapo...

. In this, Heisenberg was called a "White Jew" (i.e. an Aryan
Aryan
Aryan is an English language loanword derived from Sanskrit ārya and denoting variously*In scholarly usage:**Indo-Iranian languages *in dated usage:**the Indo-European languages more generally and their speakers...

 who acts like a Jew) who should be made to "disappear". These attacks were taken seriously, as Jews were violently attacked and incarcerated. Heisenberg fought back with an editorial and a letter to Himmler, in an attempt to resolve this matter and regain his honour. At one point, Heisenberg's mother visited Himmler's mother. The two women knew each other as Heisenberg's maternal grandfather and Himmler's father were rectors and members of a Bavarian hiking club. Eventually, Himmler settled the Heisenberg affair by sending two letters, one to SS Gruppenführer
Gruppenführer
Gruppenführer was an early paramilitary rank of the Nazi Party, first created in 1925 as a senior rank of the SA.-SS rank:...

 Reinhard Heydrich
Reinhard Heydrich
Reinhard Tristan Eugen Heydrich , also known as The Hangman, was a high-ranking German Nazi official.He was SS-Obergruppenführer and General der Polizei, chief of the Reich Main Security Office and Stellvertretender Reichsprotektor of Bohemia and Moravia...

 and one to Heisenberg, both on 21 July 1938. In the letter to Heydrich, Himmler said Germany could not afford to lose or silence Heisenberg as he would be useful for teaching a generation of scientists. To Heisenberg, Himmler said the letter came on recommendation of his family and he cautioned Heisenberg to make a distinction between professional physics research results and the personal and political attitudes of the involved scientists. The letter to Heisenberg was signed under the closing "Mit freundlichem Gruß und, Heil Hitler!" (With friendly greetings, Heil Hitler!") Overall, the Heisenberg affair was a victory for academic standards and professionalism. However, the appointment of Wilhelm Müller to replace Sommerfeld was a political victory over academic standards. Müller was not a theoretical physicist, had not published in a physics journal, and was not a member of the Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft
Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft
The Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft is the world's largest organization of physicists. The DPG's worldwide membership is cited as 60,000, as of 2011...

; his appointment was considered a travesty and detrimental to educating theoretical physicists.

During the SS investigation of Heisenberg, the three investigators had training in physics. Heisenberg had participated in the doctoral examination of one of them at the Universität Leipzig
University of Leipzig
The University of Leipzig , located in Leipzig in the Free State of Saxony, Germany, is one of the oldest universities in the world and the second-oldest university in Germany...

. The most influential of the three, however, was Johannes Juilfs
Johannes Juilfs
Johannes Wilhelm Heinrich Juilfs, also known by the alias Mathias Jules, was a German theoretical and experimental physicist. He was a member of the Sturmabteilung and then, in 1933, of the Schutzstaffel...

. During their investigation, they had become supporters of Heisenberg as well as his position against the ideological policies of the deutsche Physik movement in theoretical physics and academia.

World War II


In 1939, shortly after the discovery of nuclear 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...

, the German nuclear energy project
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...

, also known as the Uranverein (Uranium Club), was begun. Heisenberg was one of the principal scientists leading research and development in the project.

From 15 to 22 September 1941, Heisenberg traveled to German-occupied
Occupation of Denmark
Nazi Germany's occupation of Denmark began with Operation Weserübung on 9 April 1940, and lasted until German forces withdrew at the end of World War II following their surrender to the Allies on 5 May 1945. Contrary to the situation in other countries under German occupation, most Danish...

 Copenhagen
Copenhagen
Copenhagen is the capital and largest city of Denmark, with an urban population of 1,199,224 and a metropolitan population of 1,930,260 . With the completion of the transnational Øresund Bridge in 2000, Copenhagen has become the centre of the increasingly integrating Øresund Region...

 to lecture and discuss nuclear research and theoretical physics with Niels Bohr. The meeting, and specifically what it might reveal about Heisenberg's intentions concerning developing nuclear weapons for the Nazi regime, is the subject of the award winning Michael Frayn play titled Copenhagen
Copenhagen (play)
Copenhagen is a play by Michael Frayn, based around an event that occurred in Copenhagen in 1941, a meeting between the physicists Niels Bohr and Werner Heisenberg. It debuted in London in 1998...

. Documents relating to the Bohr-Heisenberg meeting were released in 2002 by the Niels Bohr Archive and by the Heisenberg family.

On 26 February 1942, Heisenberg presented a lecture to Reich officials on energy acquisition from nuclear fission, after the Army withdrew most of its funding. The Uranium Club was transferred to the Reich Research Council (RFR) in July 1942. On 4 June 1942, Heisenberg was summoned to report to Albert Speer
Albert Speer
Albert Speer, born Berthold Konrad Hermann Albert Speer, was a German architect who was, for a part of World War II, Minister of Armaments and War Production for the Third Reich. Speer was Adolf Hitler's chief architect before assuming ministerial office...

, Germany's Minister of Armaments, on the prospects for converting the Uranium Club's research toward developing nuclear weapon
Nuclear weapon
A nuclear weapon is an explosive device that derives its destructive force from nuclear reactions, either fission or a combination of fission and fusion. Both reactions release vast quantities of energy from relatively small amounts of matter. The first fission bomb test released the same amount...

s. During the meeting, Heisenberg told Speer that a bomb could not be built before 1945, and would require significant monetary and manpower resources. Five days later, on 9 June 1942, 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...

 issued a decree for the reorganization of the RFR as a separate legal entity under the Reich Ministry for Armament and Ammunition; the decree appointed Reich Marshall Göring as the president.

In September 1942, Heisenberg submitted his first paper of a three-part series on the scattering matrix, or S-matrix, in elementary particle physics
Particle physics
Particle physics is a branch of physics that studies the existence and interactions of particles that are the constituents of what is usually referred to as matter or radiation. In current understanding, particles are excitations of quantum fields and interact following their dynamics...

. The first two papers were published in 1943 and the third in 1944. The S-matrix described only observables, i.e., the states of incident particles in a collision process, the states of those emerging from the collision, and stable bound state
Bound state
In physics, a bound state describes a system where a particle is subject to a potential such that the particle has a tendency to remain localised in one or more regions of space...

s; there would be no reference to the intervening states. This was the same precedent as he followed in 1925 in what turned out to be the foundation of the matrix formulation of quantum mechanics through only the use of observables.

In February 1943, Heisenberg was appointed to the Chair for Theoretical Physics at the Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität (today, the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Humboldt University of Berlin
The Humboldt University of Berlin is Berlin's oldest university, founded in 1810 as the University of Berlin by the liberal Prussian educational reformer and linguist Wilhelm von Humboldt, whose university model has strongly influenced other European and Western universities...

). In April, his election to the Preußische Akademie der Wissenschaften (Prussian Academy of Sciences
Prussian Academy of Sciences
The Prussian Academy of Sciences was an academy established in Berlin on 11 July 1700, four years after the Akademie der Künste or "Arts Academy", to which "Berlin Academy" may also refer.-Origins:...

) was approved. That same month, he moved his family to their retreat in Urfeld as Allied bombing increased in Berlin. In the summer, he dispatched the first of his staff at the Kaiser-Wilhelm Institut für Physik to Hechingen
Hechingen
Hechingen is a town in central Baden-Württemberg, Germany. It is situated about south of the state capital of Stuttgart and north of Lake Constance and the Swiss border.- City districts :...

 and its neighboring town of Haigerloch
Haigerloch
-Geography:-Geographical situation:Haigerloch lies at between 430 and 550 metres elevation in the valley of the Eyach, which forms two loops in a steep shelly limestone valley...

, on the edge of the Black Forest
Black Forest
The Black Forest is a wooded mountain range in Baden-Württemberg, southwestern Germany. It is bordered by the Rhine valley to the west and south. The highest peak is the Feldberg with an elevation of 1,493 metres ....

, for the same reasons. From 18–26 October, he traveled to German-occupied Netherlands. In December 1943, Heisenberg visited German-occupied Poland
History of Poland (1939–1945)
The history of Poland from 1939 to 1945 encompasses the German invasion of Poland as well as the Soviet invasion of Poland through to the end of World War II. On 1 September 1939, without a formal declaration of war, Germany invaded Poland...

.

From 24 January to 4 February 1944, Heisenberg traveled to occupied Copenhagen, after the German Army confiscated Bohr's Institute of Theoretical Physics. He made a short return trip in April. In December, Heisenberg lectured in neutral Switzerland.

In January 1945, Heisenberg vacated the Kaiser-Wilhelm Institut für Physik with about all of his staff for the facilities in the Black Forest.

Uranium Club


In December 1938, the German chemists 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...

 sent a manuscript to Naturwissenschaften
Die Naturwissenschaften
Naturwissenschaften is a monthly peer-reviewed scientific journal published by Springer on behalf of several learned societies.- History :...

reporting they had detected the element barium
Barium
Barium is a chemical element with the symbol Ba and atomic number 56. It is the fifth element in Group 2, a soft silvery metallic alkaline earth metal. Barium is never found in nature in its pure form due to its reactivity with air. Its oxide is historically known as baryta but it reacts with...

 after bombarding 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...

 with neutrons; simultaneously, they communicated these results to 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...

, who had in July of that year fled to the Netherlands and then went to Sweden. 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 these results as being nuclear 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...

. Frisch confirmed this experimentally on 13 January 1939.

Paul Harteck
Paul Harteck
Paul Karl Maria Harteck was a German physical chemist. He was arrested by the allied British and American Armed Forces and incarcerated at Farm Hall for six months in 1945 under Operation Epsilon.-Education:Harteck studied chemistry at the University of Vienna and the Humboldt University of Berlin...

 was director of the physical chemistry
Physical chemistry
Physical chemistry is the study of macroscopic, atomic, subatomic, and particulate phenomena in chemical systems in terms of physical laws and concepts...

 department at the University of Hamburg
University of Hamburg
The University of Hamburg is a university in Hamburg, Germany. It was founded on 28 March 1919 by Wilhelm Stern and others. It grew out of the previous Allgemeines Vorlesungswesen and the Kolonialinstitut as well as the Akademisches Gymnasium. There are around 38,000 students as of the start of...

 and an advisor to the Heereswaffenamt (HWA, Army Ordnance Office). On 24 April 1939, along with his teaching assistant
Teaching assistant
A teaching assistant is an individual who assists a professor or teacher with instructional responsibilities. TAs include graduate teaching assistants , who are graduate students; undergraduate teaching assistants , who are undergraduate students; secondary school TAs, who are either high school...

 Wilhelm Groth
Wilhelm Groth
Wilhelm Groth was a German physical chemist. During World War II, he worked on the German nuclear energy project, also known as the Uranium Club; his main activity was the development of centrifuges for the enrichment of uranium. After the war, he was a professor of physical chemistry at the...

, Harteck made contact with the Reichskriegsministerium (RKM, Reich Ministry of War
Ministry of War
A Ministry of War or Ministry for War is an administrative, supply and services agency of an army, as opposed to the entire military establishment. Both Mexico and Brazil both still maintain a War Department for the support of their armies...

) to alert them to the potential of military applications of nuclear chain reactions. Two days earlier, on 22 April 1939, after hearing a colloquium 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...

 on the use of 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...

 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 a Uranmaschine (uranium machine, i.e., nuclear reactor
Nuclear reactor
A nuclear reactor is a device to initiate and control a sustained nuclear chain reaction. Most commonly they are used for generating electricity and for the propulsion of ships. Usually heat from nuclear fission is passed to a working fluid , which runs through turbines that power either ship's...

), Georg Joos
Georg Joos
Georg Jakob Christof Joos 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...

, along with Hanle, notified Wilhelm Dames, at the Reichserziehungsministerium
Reichserziehungsministerium
The Reichserziehungsministerium was officially known as the Reichsministerium für Wissenschaft, Erziehung und Volksbildung .-Background:...

(REM, Reich Ministry
Ministry (government department)
A ministry is a specialised organisation responsible for a sector of government public administration, sometimes led by a minister or a senior public servant, that can have responsibility for one or more departments, agencies, bureaus, commissions or other smaller executive, advisory, managerial or...

 of Education
Education
Education in its broadest, general sense is the means through which the aims and habits of a group of people lives on from one generation to the next. Generally, it occurs through any experience that has a formative effect on the way one thinks, feels, or acts...

), of potential military applications of nuclear energy
Nuclear power
Nuclear power is the use of sustained nuclear fission to generate heat and electricity. Nuclear power plants provide about 6% of the world's energy and 13–14% of the world's electricity, with the U.S., France, and Japan together accounting for about 50% of nuclear generated electricity...

. The communication was given to Abraham Esau
Abraham Esau
Robert Abraham Esau was a German physicist.After receipt of his doctorate from the University of Berlin, Esau worked at Telefunken, where he pioneered very high frequency waves used in radar, radio, and television, and he was president of the Deutscher Telefunken Verband...

, head of the physics section of the Reichsforschungsrat
Reichsforschungsrat
The Reichsforschungsrat was created in Germany in 1937 under the Education Ministry for the purpose of centralized planning of all basic and applied research, with the exception of aeronautical research...

(RFR, Reich Research Council) at the REM. On 29 April, a group, organized by Esau, met at the REM to discuss the potential of a sustained nuclear chain reaction
Nuclear chain reaction
A nuclear chain reaction occurs when one nuclear reaction causes an average of one or more nuclear reactions, thus leading to a self-propagating number of these reactions. The specific nuclear reaction may be the fission of heavy isotopes or the fusion of light isotopes...

. The group included the physicists Walther Bothe
Walther Bothe
Walther Wilhelm Georg Bothe was a German nuclear physicist, who shared the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1954 with Max Born....

, Robert Döpel
Robert Döpel
Georg Robert Döpel was a German experimental nuclear physicist. He was a participant in a group known as the “first Uranverein,” which was spawned by a meeting conducted by the Reichserziehungsministerium, in April 1939, to discuss the potential of a sustained nuclear reaction...

, Hans Geiger, Wolfgang Gentner
Wolfgang Gentner
Wolfgang Gentner was a German experimental nuclear physicist.Gentner received his doctorate in 1930 from the University of Frankfurt. From 1932 to 1935 he had a fellowship which allowed him to do postdoctoral research and study at Curie's Radium Institute at the University of Paris...

 (probably sent by Walther Bothe
Walther Bothe
Walther Wilhelm Georg Bothe was a German nuclear physicist, who shared the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1954 with Max Born....

), 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...

, Gerhard Hoffmann
Gerhard Hoffmann
Gerhard Hoffmann was a German nuclear physicist. During World War II, he contributed to the German nuclear energy project, also known as the Uranium Club.-Education:...

 and Georg Joos
Georg Joos
Georg Jakob Christof Joos 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...

; Peter Debye
Peter Debye
Peter Joseph William Debye FRS was a Dutch physicist and physical chemist, and Nobel laureate in Chemistry.-Early life:...

 was invited, but he did not attend. After this, informal work began at the Georg-August University of Göttingen by Joos, Hanle and their colleague Reinhold Mannfopff; the group of physicists was known informally as the first 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...

(Uranium Club) and formally as Arbeitsgemeinschaft für Kernphysik. The group's work was discontinued in August 1939, when the three were called to military training
Military education and training
Military education and training is a process which intends to establish and improve the capabilities of military personnel in their respective roles....

.

The second 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...

began after the Heereswaffenamt (HWA, Army Ordnance Office) squeezed the Reichsforschungsrat
Reichsforschungsrat
The Reichsforschungsrat was created in Germany in 1937 under the Education Ministry for the purpose of centralized planning of all basic and applied research, with the exception of aeronautical research...

(RFR, Reich Research Council) out of the Reichserziehungsministerium
Reichserziehungsministerium
The Reichserziehungsministerium was officially known as the Reichsministerium für Wissenschaft, Erziehung und Volksbildung .-Background:...

(REM, Reich Ministry of Education) and started the formal German nuclear energy project under military auspices. The second Uranverein was formed on 1 September 1939, the day World War II began, and it had its first meeting on 16 September 1939. The meeting was organized by Kurt Diebner
Kurt Diebner
Kurt Diebner was a German nuclear physicist who is well known for directing and administrating the German nuclear energy project, a secretive program aiming to built weapon of mass destruction for the Nazi Germany during the course of World War II...

, advisor to the HWA, and held in Berlin. The invitees included Walther Bothe
Walther Bothe
Walther Wilhelm Georg Bothe was a German nuclear physicist, who shared the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1954 with Max Born....

, Siegfried Flügge
Siegfried Flügge
Siegfried Flügge was a German theoretical physicist and made contributions to nuclear physics. He worked at the Kaiser-Wilhelm Institut für Chemie and worked in the German Uranverein...

, Hans Geiger, 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...

, Paul Harteck
Paul Harteck
Paul Karl Maria Harteck was a German physical chemist. He was arrested by the allied British and American Armed Forces and incarcerated at Farm Hall for six months in 1945 under Operation Epsilon.-Education:Harteck studied chemistry at the University of Vienna and the Humboldt University of Berlin...

, Gerhard Hoffmann
Gerhard Hoffmann
Gerhard Hoffmann was a German nuclear physicist. During World War II, he contributed to the German nuclear energy project, also known as the Uranium Club.-Education:...

, Josef Mattauch
Josef Mattauch
Josef Mattauch was a German physicist known for his work in the investigation of the isotopic abundances by mass spectrometry. He developed the Mattauch isobar rule in 1934.-Mattauch-Herzog geometry mass spectrometer:...

 and Georg Stetter
Georg Stetter
Georg Stetter was an Austrian-German nuclear physicist. Stetter was Director of the Second Physics Institute of the University of Vienna. He was a principal member of the German nuclear energy project, also known as the Uranium Club. In the latter years of World War II, he was also the Director...

. A second meeting was held soon thereafter and included Klaus Clusius
Klaus Clusius
Klaus Clusius was a German physical chemist from Breslau , Silesia. During World War II, he worked on the German nuclear energy project, also known as the Uranium Club; he worked on isotope separation techniques and heavy water production...

, Robert Döpel
Robert Döpel
Georg Robert Döpel was a German experimental nuclear physicist. He was a participant in a group known as the “first Uranverein,” which was spawned by a meeting conducted by the Reichserziehungsministerium, in April 1939, to discuss the potential of a sustained nuclear reaction...

, Werner Heisenberg and Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker
Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker
Carl Friedrich Freiherr von Weizsäcker was a German physicist and philosopher. He was the longest-living member of the research team which performed nuclear research in Germany during the Second World War, under Werner Heisenberg's leadership...

. Also at this time, the Kaiser-Wilhelm Institut für Physik (KWIP, Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Physics, after World War II the Max Planck Institute for Physics
Max Planck Institute for Physics
Max Planck Institute for Physics is a physics institute in Munich, Germany that specializes in High Energy Physics and Astroparticle physics. It is part of the Max-Planck-Gesellschaft and is also known as the Werner Heisenberg Institute, after its first director.It was founded as the Kaiser Wilhelm...

), in Berlin-Dahlem
Dahlem (Berlin)
Dahlem is a locality of the Steglitz-Zehlendorf borough in southwestern Berlin. Until Berlin's 2001 administrative reform it was a part of the former borough of Zehlendorf. Dahlem is one of the most affluent parts of the city and home to the main campus of the Free University of Berlin with the...

, was placed under HWA authority, with Diebner as the administrative director, and the military control of the nuclear research commenced.

When it was apparent that the nuclear energy project would not make a decisive contribution to ending the war effort
War effort
In politics and military planning, a war effort refers to a coordinated mobilization of society's resources—both industrial and human—towards the support of a military force...

 in the near term, control of the KWIP was returned in January 1942 to its umbrella organization
Umbrella organization
An umbrella organization is an association of institutions, who work together formally to coordinate activities or pool resources. In business, political, or other environments, one group, the umbrella organization, provides resources and often an identity to the smaller organizations...

, the Kaiser-Wilhelm Gesellschaft (KWG, Kaiser Wilhelm Society, after World War II the Max-Planck Gesellschaft
Max Planck Society
The Max Planck Society for the Advancement of Science is a formally independent non-governmental and non-profit association of German research institutes publicly funded by the federal and the 16 state governments of Germany....

), and HWA control of the project was relinquished to the RFR in July 1942. The nuclear energy project thereafter maintained its kriegswichtig (important for the war) designation and funding continued from the military. However, the German nuclear power
Nuclear power
Nuclear power is the use of sustained nuclear fission to generate heat and electricity. Nuclear power plants provide about 6% of the world's energy and 13–14% of the world's electricity, with the U.S., France, and Japan together accounting for about 50% of nuclear generated electricity...

 project was then broken down into the following main areas: 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...

 and heavy water
Heavy water
Heavy water is water highly enriched in the hydrogen isotope deuterium; e.g., heavy water used in CANDU reactors is 99.75% enriched by hydrogen atom-fraction...

 production, uranium isotope separation
Isotope separation
Isotope separation is the process of concentrating specific isotopes of a chemical element by removing other isotopes, for example separating natural uranium into enriched uranium and depleted uranium. This is a crucial process in the manufacture of uranium fuel for nuclear power stations, and is...

 and the Uranmaschine (uranium machine, i.e., nuclear reactor). Also, the project was then essentially split up between a number of institutes, where the directors dominated the research and set their own research agendas. The dominant personnel and facilities were the following:
  • Institut für Physik (Walther Bothe
    Walther Bothe
    Walther Wilhelm Georg Bothe was a German nuclear physicist, who shared the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1954 with Max Born....

    ) of the Kaiser-Wilhelm Institut für medizinische Forschung (KWImF, Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Medical Research),
  • Institute for Physical Chemistry (Klaus Clusius
    Klaus Clusius
    Klaus Clusius was a German physical chemist from Breslau , Silesia. During World War II, he worked on the German nuclear energy project, also known as the Uranium Club; he worked on isotope separation techniques and heavy water production...

    ) at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich,
  • HWA Versuchsstelle (testing station) in Gottow (Kurt Diebner
    Kurt Diebner
    Kurt Diebner was a German nuclear physicist who is well known for directing and administrating the German nuclear energy project, a secretive program aiming to built weapon of mass destruction for the Nazi Germany during the course of World War II...

    ),
  • Kaiser-Wilhelm-Institut für Chemie (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...

    ),
  • Physical Chemistry Department (Paul Harteck
    Paul Harteck
    Paul Karl Maria Harteck was a German physical chemist. He was arrested by the allied British and American Armed Forces and incarcerated at Farm Hall for six months in 1945 under Operation Epsilon.-Education:Harteck studied chemistry at the University of Vienna and the Humboldt University of Berlin...

    ) of the University of Hamburg
    University of Hamburg
    The University of Hamburg is a university in Hamburg, Germany. It was founded on 28 March 1919 by Wilhelm Stern and others. It grew out of the previous Allgemeines Vorlesungswesen and the Kolonialinstitut as well as the Akademisches Gymnasium. There are around 38,000 students as of the start of...

    ,
  • Kaiser-Wilhelm-Institut für Physik (Werner Heisenberg),
  • Second Experimental Physics Institute (Hans Kopfermann
    Hans Kopfermann
    Hans Kopfermann was a German atomic and nuclear physicist. He devoted his entire career to spectroscopic investigations, and he did pioneering work in measuring nuclear spin...

    ) at the Georg-August University of Göttingen,
  • Auergesellschaft
    Auergesellschaft
    The industrial firm Auergesellschaft was founded in 1892 with headquarters in Berlin. Up to the end of World War II, Auergesellschaft had research activities in the areas of gas mantles, luminescence, rare earths, radioactivity, and uranium and thorium compounds. In 1934, the corporation was...

     (Nikolaus Riehl
    Nikolaus Riehl
    Nikolaus Riehl was a German industrial nuclear chemist. He was head of the scientific headquarters of Auergesellschaft. When the Russians entered Berlin near the end of World War II, he was invited to the Soviet Union, where he stayed for 10 years...

    ), and
  • II. Physikalisches Institut (Georg Stetter
    Georg Stetter
    Georg Stetter was an Austrian-German nuclear physicist. Stetter was Director of the Second Physics Institute of the University of Vienna. He was a principal member of the German nuclear energy project, also known as the Uranium Club. In the latter years of World War II, he was also the Director...

    ) at the University of Vienna
    University of Vienna
    The University of Vienna is a public university located in Vienna, Austria. It was founded by Duke Rudolph IV in 1365 and is the oldest university in the German-speaking world...

    .


Heisenberg was appointed director-in-residence of the KWIP on 1 July 1942, as Peter Debye
Peter Debye
Peter Joseph William Debye FRS was a Dutch physicist and physical chemist, and Nobel laureate in Chemistry.-Early life:...

 was still officially the director and on leave in the United States; Debye had gone on leave as he was a citizen of The Netherlands and had refused to become a German citizen when the HWA took administrative control of the KWIP. Heisenberg still also had his department of physics at the University of Leipzig where work was done for the Uranverein by Robert Döpel
Robert Döpel
Georg Robert Döpel was a German experimental nuclear physicist. He was a participant in a group known as the “first Uranverein,” which was spawned by a meeting conducted by the Reichserziehungsministerium, in April 1939, to discuss the potential of a sustained nuclear reaction...

 and his wife Klara Döpel
Klara Döpel
Klara Renate Döpel was a German nuclear physicist and feminist. She married the German nuclear physicist Robert Döpel. They worked together as a team at Leipzig University studying nuclear reactor configurations for the German nuclear energy project...

. During the period Kurt Diebner
Kurt Diebner
Kurt Diebner was a German nuclear physicist who is well known for directing and administrating the German nuclear energy project, a secretive program aiming to built weapon of mass destruction for the Nazi Germany during the course of World War II...

 administered the KWIP under the HWA program, considerable personal and professional animosity developed between Diebner and the Heisenberg inner circle – Heisenberg, Karl Wirtz
Karl Wirtz
Karl Eugen Julius Wirtz was a German nuclear physicist. He was arrested by the allied British and American Armed Forces and incarcerated at Farm Hall for six months in 1945 under Operation Epsilon.-Education:...

, and Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker
Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker
Carl Friedrich Freiherr von Weizsäcker was a German physicist and philosopher. He was the longest-living member of the research team which performed nuclear research in Germany during the Second World War, under Werner Heisenberg's leadership...

.

The point in 1942, when the army relinquished its control of the German nuclear energy project, was the zenith of the project relative to the number of personnel devoting time to the effort. There were only about 70 scientists working on the project, with about 40 devoting more than half their time to nuclear fission research. After this, the number of scientists working on applied nuclear fission diminished dramatically. Many of the scientists not working with the main institutes stopped working on nuclear fission and devoted their efforts to more pressing war related work.

Over time, the HWA and then the RFR controlled the German nuclear energy project. The most influential people in the project were Kurt Diebner
Kurt Diebner
Kurt Diebner was a German nuclear physicist who is well known for directing and administrating the German nuclear energy project, a secretive program aiming to built weapon of mass destruction for the Nazi Germany during the course of World War II...

, Abraham Esau
Abraham Esau
Robert Abraham Esau was a German physicist.After receipt of his doctorate from the University of Berlin, Esau worked at Telefunken, where he pioneered very high frequency waves used in radar, radio, and television, and he was president of the Deutscher Telefunken Verband...

, Walther Gerlach and Erich Schumann
Erich Schumann
Erich Schumann was a German physicist who specialized in acoustics and explosives, and had a penchant for music, as he was a grandson of the classical composer Robert Schumann. He was a general officer in the army and a professor at the University of Berlin and the Technical University of Berlin...

. Schumann was one of the most powerful and influential physicists in Germany. Schumann was director of the Physics Department II at the Frederick William University (later, University of Berlin), which was commissioned and funded by the Oberkommando des Heeres (OKW, Army High Command) to conduct physics research projects. He was also head of the research department of the HWA, assistant secretary of the Science Department of the OKW and Bevollmächtiger (plenipotentiary) for high explosives
Explosive material
An explosive material, also called an explosive, is a reactive substance that contains a great amount of potential energy that can produce an explosion if released suddenly, usually accompanied by the production of light, heat, sound, and pressure...

. Diebner, throughout the life of the nuclear energy project, had more control over nuclear fission research than did Walther Bothe
Walther Bothe
Walther Wilhelm Georg Bothe was a German nuclear physicist, who shared the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1954 with Max Born....

, Klaus Clusius
Klaus Clusius
Klaus Clusius was a German physical chemist from Breslau , Silesia. During World War II, he worked on the German nuclear energy project, also known as the Uranium Club; he worked on isotope separation techniques and heavy water production...

, 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...

, Paul Harteck
Paul Harteck
Paul Karl Maria Harteck was a German physical chemist. He was arrested by the allied British and American Armed Forces and incarcerated at Farm Hall for six months in 1945 under Operation Epsilon.-Education:Harteck studied chemistry at the University of Vienna and the Humboldt University of Berlin...

 or Werner Heisenberg.

1945: Operation Alsos and Operation Epsilon


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...

 was an Allied effort commanded by the Russian-American
Russian American
Russian Americans are primarily Americans who traces their ancestry to Russia. The definition can be applied to recent Russian immigrants to the United States, as well as to settlers of 19th century Russian settlements in northwestern America which includes today's California, Alaska and...

 Colonel Boris T. Pash
Boris Pash
Boris T. Pash was a United States Army officer.-Biography:He was born in San Francisco, California, on June 20, 1900. His father was Rev. Theodore Pashkovsky , a Russian Orthodox priest who had been sent to California by the Church in 1894...

. He reported directly to General Leslie Groves
Leslie Groves
Lieutenant General Leslie Richard Groves, Jr. was a United States Army Corps of Engineers officer who oversaw the construction of the Pentagon and directed the Manhattan Project that developed the atomic bomb during World War II. As the son of a United States Army chaplain, Groves lived at a...

, commander of the Manhattan Engineer District
Manhattan Project
The Manhattan Project was a research and development program, led by the United States with participation from the United Kingdom and Canada, that produced the first atomic bomb during World War II. From 1942 to 1946, the project was under the direction of Major General Leslie Groves of the US Army...

, which was developing atomic weapons for the United States. The chief scientific advisor to Operation Alsos was the physicist Samuel Abraham Goudsmit
Samuel Abraham Goudsmit
Samuel Abraham Goudsmit was a Dutch-American physicist famous for jointly proposing the concept of electron spin with George Eugene Uhlenbeck in 1925.-Biography:...

. Goudsmit was selected for this task because of his knowledge of physics, he spoke German, and he personally knew a number of the German scientists working on the German nuclear energy project. He also knew little of the Manhattan Project, so, if he were captured, he would have little intelligence value to the Germans. The objectives of Operation Alsos were to determine if the Germans had an atomic bomb program and to exploit German atomic related facilities, intellectual materials, materiel resources, and scientific personnel for the benefit of the United States. Personnel on this operation generally swept into areas which had just come under control of the Allied military forces, but sometimes they operated in areas still under control by German forces.

Berlin had been a location of many German scientific research
Scientific method
Scientific method refers to a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge. To be termed scientific, a method of inquiry must be based on gathering empirical and measurable evidence subject to specific principles of...

 facilities. To limit casualties and loss of equipment, many of these facilities were dispersed to other locations in the latter years of the war. The Kaiser-Wilhelm-Institut für Physik (KWIP, Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Physics) had mostly been moved in 1943 and 1944 to Hechingen
Hechingen
Hechingen is a town in central Baden-Württemberg, Germany. It is situated about south of the state capital of Stuttgart and north of Lake Constance and the Swiss border.- City districts :...

 and its neighboring town of Haigerloch
Haigerloch
-Geography:-Geographical situation:Haigerloch lies at between 430 and 550 metres elevation in the valley of the Eyach, which forms two loops in a steep shelly limestone valley...

, on the edge of the Black Forest
Black Forest
The Black Forest is a wooded mountain range in Baden-Württemberg, southwestern Germany. It is bordered by the Rhine valley to the west and south. The highest peak is the Feldberg with an elevation of 1,493 metres ....

, which eventually became the French occupation zone. This move and a little luck allowed the Americans to take into custody a large number of German scientists associated with nuclear research. The only section of the institute which remained in Berlin was the low-temperature
Cryogenics
In physics, cryogenics is the study of the production of very low temperature and the behavior of materials at those temperatures. A person who studies elements under extremely cold temperature is called a cryogenicist. Rather than the relative temperature scales of Celsius and Fahrenheit,...

 physics section, headed by Ludwig Bewilogua (1906–83), who was in charge of the exponential uranium pile.

Nine of the prominent German scientists who published reports in Kernphysikalische Forschungsberichte as members of the Uranverein were picked up by 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 incarcerated in England under Operation Epsilon
Operation Epsilon
Operation Epsilon was the codename of a program in which Allied forces near the end of World War II detained ten German scientists who were thought to have worked on Nazi Germany's nuclear program. The scientists were captured between May 1 and June 30, 1945, and interned at Farm Hall, a bugged...

: Erich Bagge
Erich Bagge
Erich Rudolf Bagge was a German scientist. Bagge, a student of Werner Heisenberg for his doctorate and Habilitation, was engaged in German Atomic Energy research and the German nuclear energy project during the Second World War. He worked as an Assistant at the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Institut für Physik...

, Kurt Diebner
Kurt Diebner
Kurt Diebner was a German nuclear physicist who is well known for directing and administrating the German nuclear energy project, a secretive program aiming to built weapon of mass destruction for the Nazi Germany during the course of World War II...

, Walther Gerlach, 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...

, Paul Harteck
Paul Harteck
Paul Karl Maria Harteck was a German physical chemist. He was arrested by the allied British and American Armed Forces and incarcerated at Farm Hall for six months in 1945 under Operation Epsilon.-Education:Harteck studied chemistry at the University of Vienna and the Humboldt University of Berlin...

, Werner Heisenberg, Horst Korsching
Horst Korsching
Horst Korsching was a German physicist. He was arrested by the allied British and American Armed Forces and incarcerated at Farm Hall for six months in 1945 under Operation Epsilon.-Education:...

, Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker
Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker
Carl Friedrich Freiherr von Weizsäcker was a German physicist and philosopher. He was the longest-living member of the research team which performed nuclear research in Germany during the Second World War, under Werner Heisenberg's leadership...

 and Karl Wirtz
Karl Wirtz
Karl Eugen Julius Wirtz was a German nuclear physicist. He was arrested by the allied British and American Armed Forces and incarcerated at Farm Hall for six months in 1945 under Operation Epsilon.-Education:...

. Also, incarcerated was Max von Laue
Max von Laue
Max Theodor Felix von Laue was a German physicist who won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1914 for his discovery of the diffraction of X-rays by crystals...

, although he had nothing to do with the nuclear energy project. Goudsmit, the chief scientific advisor to Operation Alsos, thought von Laue might be beneficial to the postwar rebuilding of Germany and would benefit from the high level contacts he would have in England.

Heisenberg had been captured and arrested by Colonel Pash at Heisenberg's retreat in Urfeld, on 3 May 1945, in what was a true alpine-type operation in territory still under control by German forces. He was taken to Heidelberg, where, on 5 May, he met Goudsmit for the first time since the Ann Arbor visit in 1939. Germany surrendered just two days later. Heisenberg did not see his family again for eight months. Heisenberg was moved across France and Belgium and flown to England on 3 July 1945.

The 10 German scientists were held at Farm Hall in England. The facility had been a safe house
Safe house
In the jargon of law enforcement and intelligence agencies, a safe house is a secure location, suitable for hiding witnesses, agents or other persons perceived as being in danger...

 of the British foreign intelligence MI6
Secret Intelligence Service
The Secret Intelligence Service is responsible for supplying the British Government with foreign intelligence. Alongside the internal Security Service , the Government Communications Headquarters and the Defence Intelligence , it operates under the formal direction of the Joint Intelligence...

. During their detention, their conversations were recorded. Conversations thought to be of intelligence value were transcribed and translated into English. The transcripts were released in 1992. Bernstein has published an annotated version of the transcripts in his book Hitler's Uranium Club: The Secret Recordings at Farm Hall, along with an introduction to put them in perspective. A complete, unedited publication of the British version of the reports appeared as Operation Epsilon: The Farm Hall Transcripts, which was published in 1993 by the Institute of Physics in Bristol and by the University of California Press in the United States.

Post 1945


On 3 January 1946, the 10 Operation Epsilon
Operation Epsilon
Operation Epsilon was the codename of a program in which Allied forces near the end of World War II detained ten German scientists who were thought to have worked on Nazi Germany's nuclear program. The scientists were captured between May 1 and June 30, 1945, and interned at Farm Hall, a bugged...

 detainees were transported to Alswede
Alswede
Alswede is a village in the East Westphalian borough of Lübbecke in Minden-Lübbecke district in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia.- Politics :* The parish chair of Alswede is Günther Vullriede.* The local historian is Helmut Woelk....

 in Germany, which was in the British occupation zone. Heisenberg settled in Göttingen, also in the British zone. In July, he was named director of the Kaiser-Wilhelm Institut für Physik (KWIP, Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Physics), then located in Göttingen. Shortly thereafter, it was renamed the Max-Planck Institut für Physik, in honor of Max Planck
Max Planck
Max Karl Ernst Ludwig Planck, ForMemRS, was a German physicist who actualized the quantum physics, initiating a revolution in natural science and philosophy. He is regarded as the founder of the quantum theory, for which he received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1918.-Life and career:Planck came...

 and to assuage political objections to the continuation of the institute. Heisenberg was its director until 1958. In 1958, the institute was moved to Munich, expanded, and renamed Max-Planck-Institut für Physik und Astrophysik (MPIFA). Heisenberg was its director from 1960 to 1970; in the interim, Heisenberg and the astrophysicist Ludwig Biermann
Ludwig Biermann
Ludwig Franz Benedict Biermann was a German astronomer.He made important contributions to astrophysics and plasma physics...

 were co-directors. Heisenberg resigned his directorship of the MPIFA on 31 December 1970. Upon the move to Munich, Heisenberg also became an ordentlicher Professor (ordinarius professor) at the University of Munich.

Just as the Americans did with Operation Alsos, the Soviets inserted special search teams into Germany and Austria in the wake of their troops. Their objective, under the Russian Alsos
Russian Alsos
The Russian Alsos was an operation which took place in early 1945 in Germany, Austria, and Czechoslovakia, and whose objectives were the exploitation of German atomic related facilities, intellectual materials, materiel resources, and scientific personnel for the benefit of the Soviet atomic bomb...

, was also the exploitation of German atomic related facilities, intellectual materials, materiel resources and scientific personnel for the benefit of the Soviet Union. One of the German scientists recruited under this Soviet operation was the nuclear physicist Heinz Pose
Heinz Pose
Rudolf Heinz Pose was a German nuclear physicist.He did pioneering work which contributed to the understanding nuclear energy levels. He worked on the German nuclear energy project Uranverein. After World War II, the Soviet Union sent him to establish and head Laboratory V in Obninsk...

, who was made head of Laboratory V in Obninsk
Obninsk
Obninsk is a city in Kaluga Oblast, Russia, located southwest of Moscow. Population: Obninsk is one of the major Russian science cities. The first nuclear power plant in the world for the large-scale production of electricity opened here on June 27, 1954, and it also doubled as a training...

. When he returned to Germany on a recruiting trip for his laboratory, Pose wrote a letter to Werner Heisenberg inviting him to work in the USSR. The letter lauded the working conditions in the USSR and the available resources, as well as the favorable attitude of the Soviets towards German scientists. A courier hand delivered the recruitment letter, dated 18 July 1946, to Heisenberg; Heisenberg politely declined in a return letter to Pose.

In 1947, Heisenberg presented lectures in Cambridge
Cambridge
The city of Cambridge is a university town and the administrative centre of the county of Cambridgeshire, England. It lies in East Anglia about north of London. Cambridge is at the heart of the high-technology centre known as Silicon Fen – a play on Silicon Valley and the fens surrounding the...

, Edinburgh
Edinburgh
Edinburgh is the capital city of Scotland, the second largest city in Scotland, and the eighth most populous in the United Kingdom. The City of Edinburgh Council governs one of Scotland's 32 local government council areas. The council area includes urban Edinburgh and a rural area...

 and Bristol
Bristol
Bristol is a city, unitary authority area and ceremonial county in South West England, with an estimated population of 433,100 for the unitary authority in 2009, and a surrounding Larger Urban Zone with an estimated 1,070,000 residents in 2007...

. Heisenberg also contributed to the understanding of the phenomenon of superconductivity
Superconductivity
Superconductivity is a phenomenon of exactly zero electrical resistance occurring in certain materials below a characteristic temperature. It was discovered by Heike Kamerlingh Onnes on April 8, 1911 in Leiden. Like ferromagnetism and atomic spectral lines, superconductivity is a quantum...

 with a paper in 1947 and two papers in 1948, one of them with Max von Laue
Max von Laue
Max Theodor Felix von Laue was a German physicist who won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1914 for his discovery of the diffraction of X-rays by crystals...

.
In the period shortly after World War II, Heisenberg briefly returned to the subject of his doctoral thesis, turbulence. Three papers were published in 1948 and one in 1950.

In the post-war period, Heisenberg continued his interests in cosmic-ray showers with considerations on multiple production of meson
Meson
In particle physics, mesons are subatomic particles composed of one quark and one antiquark, bound together by the strong interaction. Because mesons are composed of sub-particles, they have a physical size, with a radius roughly one femtometer: 10−15 m, which is about the size of a proton...

s. He published three papers in 1949, two in 1952, and one in 1955.

On 9 March 1949, the Deutsche Forschungsrat (German Research Council) was established by the Max-Planck Gesellschaft (MPG, Max Planck Society
Max Planck Society
The Max Planck Society for the Advancement of Science is a formally independent non-governmental and non-profit association of German research institutes publicly funded by the federal and the 16 state governments of Germany....

, successor organization to the Kaiser-Wilhelm Gesellschaft
Kaiser Wilhelm Institute
The Kaiser Wilhelm Society for the Advancement of Science was a German scientific institution established in 1911. It was implicated in Nazi science, and after the Second World War was wound up and its functions replaced by the Max Planck Society...

. Heisenberg was appointed president of the Deutsche Forschungsrat. In 1951, the organization was fused with the Notgemeinschaft der Deutschen Wissenschaft
Notgemeinschaft der Deutschen Wissenschaft
Notgemeinschaft der Deutschen Wissenschaft was founded on 30 October 1920 on the initiative of leading members of the Preußischen Akademie der Wissenschaften – Fritz Haber, Max Planck, and Ernst von Harnack – and the former Preußischen...

 (NG, Emergency Association of German Science) and that same year renamed the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation). With the merger, Heisenberg was appointed to the presidium.

In 1952, Heisenberg served as the chairman of the Commission for Atomic Physics of the DFG. Also that year, he headed the German delegation to the European Council for Nuclear Research.

In 1953, Heisenberg was appointed president of the Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung
Alexander von Humboldt Foundation
The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation is a foundation set-up by the government of the Federal Republic and funded by the German Foreign Office, the Ministry of Education and Research, the Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development and others for the promotion of international co-operation...

by Konrad Adenauer
Konrad Adenauer
Konrad Hermann Joseph Adenauer was a German statesman. He was the chancellor of the West Germany from 1949 to 1963. He is widely recognised as a person who led his country from the ruins of World War II to a powerful and prosperous nation that had forged close relations with old enemies France,...

. Heisenberg served until 1975. Also, from 1953, Heisenberg's theoretical work concentrated on the unified field theory
Unified field theory
In physics, a unified field theory, occasionally referred to as a uniform field theory, is a type of field theory that allows all that is usually thought of as fundamental forces and elementary particles to be written in terms of a single field. There is no accepted unified field theory, and thus...

 of elementary particles.

In late 1955 to early 1956, Heisenberg gave the Gifford Lectures
Gifford Lectures
The Gifford Lectures were established by the will of Adam Lord Gifford . They were established to "promote and diffuse the study of Natural Theology in the widest sense of the term — in other words, the knowledge of God." The term natural theology as used by Gifford means theology supported...

 at St Andrews University
University of St Andrews
The University of St Andrews, informally referred to as "St Andrews", is the oldest university in Scotland and the third oldest in the English-speaking world after Oxford and Cambridge. The university is situated in the town of St Andrews, Fife, on the east coast of Scotland. It was founded between...

, in Scotland, on the intellectual history
Intellectual history
Note: this article concerns the discipline of intellectual history, and not its object, the whole span of human thought since the invention of writing. For clarifications about the latter topic, please consult the writings of the intellectual historians listed here and entries on individual...

 of physics. The lectures were later published as Physics and Philosophy: The Revolution in Modern Science.

During 1956 and 1957, Heisenberg was the chairman of the Arbeitskreis Kernphysik (Nuclear Physics Working Group) of the Fachkommission II "Forschung und Nachwuchs" (Commission II "Research and Growth") of the Deutschen Atomkommission (DAtK, German Atomic Energy Commission). Other members of the Nuclear Physics Working Group in both 1956 and 1957 were: Walther Bothe
Walther Bothe
Walther Wilhelm Georg Bothe was a German nuclear physicist, who shared the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1954 with Max Born....

, Hans Kopfermann
Hans Kopfermann
Hans Kopfermann was a German atomic and nuclear physicist. He devoted his entire career to spectroscopic investigations, and he did pioneering work in measuring nuclear spin...

 (vice-chairman), Fritz Bopp, Wolfgang Gentner
Wolfgang Gentner
Wolfgang Gentner was a German experimental nuclear physicist.Gentner received his doctorate in 1930 from the University of Frankfurt. From 1932 to 1935 he had a fellowship which allowed him to do postdoctoral research and study at Curie's Radium Institute at the University of Paris...

, Otto Haxel
Otto Haxel
Otto Haxel was a German nuclear physicist. During World War II, he worked on the German nuclear energy project. After the war, he was on the staff of the Max Planck Institute for Physics in Göttingen...

, Willibald Jentschke
Willibald Jentschke
Willibald Jentschke was an Austrian-German experimental nuclear physicist. During World War II, he made contributions to the German nuclear energy project. After World War II, he emigrated to the United States to work at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, in Ohio, for the Air Force Materiel Command...

, Heinz Maier-Liebnitz, Josef Mattauch
Josef Mattauch
Josef Mattauch was a German physicist known for his work in the investigation of the isotopic abundances by mass spectrometry. He developed the Mattauch isobar rule in 1934.-Mattauch-Herzog geometry mass spectrometer:...

, Wolfgang Riezler, Wilhelm Walcher
Wilhelm Walcher
Wilhelm Walcher was a German experimental physicist. During World War II, he worked on the German nuclear energy project, also known as the Uranium Club; he worked on mass spectrometers for isotope separation. After the war, he was director of the Institute of Physics at the University of Marburg...

 and Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker
Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker
Carl Friedrich Freiherr von Weizsäcker was a German physicist and philosopher. He was the longest-living member of the research team which performed nuclear research in Germany during the Second World War, under Werner Heisenberg's leadership...

. Wolfgang Paul
Wolfgang Paul
Wolfgang Paul was a German physicist, who co-developed the non-magnetic quadrupole mass filter which laid the foundation for what we now call an ion trap...

 was also a member of the group during 1957.

In 1957, Heisenberg was a signatory of the manifesto of the Göttinger Achtzehn
Göttinger Manifest
The Göttingen Manifesto was a declaration of 18 leading nuclear scientists of West Germany against arming the West German army with tactical nuclear weapons in the 1950s, the early part of the Cold War, as the West German government under chancellor Adenauer had suggested.-Historical situation:In...

(Göttingen Eighteen).

From 1957, Heisenberg was interested in plasma physics and the process of nuclear fusion
Nuclear fusion
Nuclear fusion is the process by which two or more atomic nuclei join together, or "fuse", to form a single heavier nucleus. This is usually accompanied by the release or absorption of large quantities of energy...

. He also collaborated with the International Institute of Atomic Physics in Geneva
Geneva
Geneva In the national languages of Switzerland the city is known as Genf , Ginevra and Genevra is the second-most-populous city in Switzerland and is the most populous city of Romandie, the French-speaking part of Switzerland...

. He was a member of the Institute's Scientific Policy Committee, and for several years was the Committee's chairman.

In 1973, Heisenberg gave a lecture at Harvard University
Harvard University
Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States, established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature. Harvard is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the first corporation chartered in the country...

 on the historical development of the concepts of quantum theory.

On 24 March 1973, Heisenberg gave a speech before the Catholic Academy of Bavaria, accepting the Romano Guardini
Romano Guardini
Romano Guardini was a Catholic priest, author, and academic. He was one of the most important figures in Catholic intellectual life in 20th-century.- Life and work:...

 Prize. An English translation of its title is "Scientific and Religious Truth." And its stated goal was "In what follows, then, we shall first of all deal with the unassailability and value of scientific truth, and then with the much wider field of religion, of which - so far as the Christian religion is concerned - Guardini himself has so persuasively written; finally - and this will be the hardest part to formulate - we shall speak of the relationship of the two truths." A more detail insight in Planck and Heisenberg on religion has been discussed by Wilfried Schröder in " Natural science and religion" (Bremen 1999, Science edition) and Wilfried Schröder " Naturerkenntnis und Religion" Bremen, science edition 2008).

Personal life


In January 1937 Heisenberg met Elisabeth Schumacher at a private music recital. Elisabeth was the daughter of a well-known Berlin economics professor. They were married on 29 April. The fraternal twins, Maria and Wolfgang, were born to them in January 1938, whereupon, Wolfgang Pauli
Wolfgang Pauli
Wolfgang Ernst Pauli was an Austrian theoretical physicist and one of the pioneers of quantum physics. In 1945, after being nominated by Albert Einstein, he received the Nobel Prize in Physics for his "decisive contribution through his discovery of a new law of Nature, the exclusion principle or...

 congratulated Heisenberg on his "pair creation" – a word play on a process from elementary particle physics, pair production
Pair production
Pair production refers to the creation of an elementary particle and its antiparticle, usually from a photon . For example an electron and its antiparticle, the positron, may be created...

. They had five more children over the next 12 years: Barbara, Christine, Jochen
Jochen Heisenberg
Jochen Heisenberg is a German physicist specializing in nuclear physics, and Professor Emeritus of Physics at the University of New Hampshire. He is the son of Nobel Prize-winning physicist Werner Heisenberg, who is best known for the uncertainty principle...

, Martin
Martin Heisenberg
Martin Heisenberg is a German neurobiologist and geneticist. Before his retirement in 2008, he held the professorial chair for genetics and neurobiology at the Bio Centre of the University of Würzburg....

 and Verena. Jochen became a physics professor at the University of New Hampshire
University of New Hampshire
The University of New Hampshire is a public university in the University System of New Hampshire , United States. The main campus is in Durham, New Hampshire. An additional campus is located in Manchester. With over 15,000 students, UNH is the largest university in New Hampshire. The university is...

.

Heisenberg enjoyed classical music
Classical music
Classical music is the art music produced in, or rooted in, the traditions of Western liturgical and secular music, encompassing a broad period from roughly the 11th century to present times...

 and was an accomplished pianist. He was a Lutheran Christian.

Heisenberg died of cancer of the kidneys and gall bladder at his home, on 1 February 1976. The next evening, his colleagues and friends walked in remembrance from the Institute of Physics to his home and each put a candle near the front door.

Honors and awards


Heisenberg was awarded a number of honors:
  • Honorary doctorates
    Honorary degree
    An honorary degree or a degree honoris causa is an academic degree for which a university has waived the usual requirements, such as matriculation, residence, study, and the passing of examinations...

     from the University of Bruxelles, the Technological University of Karlsruhe, and the University of Budapest.
  • Order of Merit of Bavaria
  • Romano Guardini
    Romano Guardini
    Romano Guardini was a Catholic priest, author, and academic. He was one of the most important figures in Catholic intellectual life in 20th-century.- Life and work:...

     Prize
  • Grand Cross for Federal Service with Star
    Bundesverdienstkreuz
    The Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany is the only general state decoration of the Federal Republic of Germany. It has existed since 7 September 1951, and between 3,000 and 5,200 awards are given every year across all classes...

  • Knight of the Order of Merit (Peace Class)
  • Fellow of the Royal Society of London
    Royal Society
    The Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge, known simply as the Royal Society, is a learned society for science, and is possibly the oldest such society in existence. Founded in November 1660, it was granted a Royal Charter by King Charles II as the "Royal Society of London"...

  • Member of the Academies of Sciences of Göttingen, Bavaria, Saxony, Prussia, Sweden, Rumania, Norway, Spain, The Netherlands, Rome (Pontifical), the Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher Leopoldina (Halle), the Accademia dei Lincei
    Accademia dei Lincei
    The Accademia dei Lincei, , is an Italian science academy, located at the Palazzo Corsini on the Via della Lungara in Rome, Italy....

     (Rome), and the American Academy of Sciences.
  • 1932–Nobel Prize in Physics
    Nobel Prize in Physics
    The Nobel Prize in Physics is awarded once a year by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. It is one of the five Nobel Prizes established by the will of Alfred Nobel in 1895 and awarded since 1901; the others are the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Nobel Prize in Literature, Nobel Peace Prize, and...

     "for the creation of quantum mechanics, the application of which has, inter alia, led to the discovery of the allotropic forms of hydrogen".
  • 1933–Max-Planck-Medaille
    Max Planck medal
    The Max Planck medal is an award for extraordinary achievements in theoretical physics. It is awarded annually by the Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft , the world's largest organization of physicists.-List of recipients:...

    of the Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft
    Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft
    The Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft is the world's largest organization of physicists. The DPG's worldwide membership is cited as 60,000, as of 2011...


Internal reports


The following reports were 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...

. The reports were classified Top Secret
Top Secret
Top Secret generally refers to the highest acknowledged level of classified information.Top Secret may also refer to:- Film and television :* Top Secret , a British comedy directed by Mario Zampi...

, 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...

.
  • Robert Döpel
    Robert Döpel
    Georg Robert Döpel was a German experimental nuclear physicist. He was a participant in a group known as the “first Uranverein,” which was spawned by a meeting conducted by the Reichserziehungsministerium, in April 1939, to discuss the potential of a sustained nuclear reaction...

    , K. Döpel
    Klara Döpel
    Klara Renate Döpel was a German nuclear physicist and feminist. She married the German nuclear physicist Robert Döpel. They worked together as a team at Leipzig University studying nuclear reactor configurations for the German nuclear energy project...

    , and Werner Heisenberg Bestimmung der Diffusionslänge thermischer Neutronen in Präparat 38 G-22 (5 December 1940)
  • Robert Döpel, K. Döpel, and Werner Heisenberg Bestimmung der Diffusionslänge thermischer Neutronen in schwerem Wasser G-23 (7 August 1940)
  • Werner Heisenberg Die Möglichkeit der technischer Energiegewinnung aus der Uranspaltung G-39 (6 December 1939)
  • Werner Heisenberg Bericht über die Möglichkeit technischer Energiegewinnung aus der Uranspaltung (II) G-40 (29 February 1940)
  • Robert Döpel, K. Döpel, and Werner Heisenberg Versuche mit Schichtenanordnungen von D2O und 38 G-75 (28 October 1941)
  • Werner Heisenberg Über die Möglichkeit der Energieerzeugung mit Hilfe des Isotops 238 G-92 (1941)
  • Werner Heisenberg Bericht über Versuche mit Schichtenanordnungen von Präparat 38 und Paraffin am Kaiser Wilhelm Institut für Physik in Berlin-Dahlem G-93 (May 1941)
  • Fritz Bopp, Erich Fischer
    Erich Fischer
    Erich Horst Fischer was a German experimental physicist. He worked at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Physics and contributed to the German nuclear energy project, also known as the Uranium Club...

    , Werner Heisenberg, Carl-Friedrich von Weizsäcker
    Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker
    Carl Friedrich Freiherr von Weizsäcker was a German physicist and philosopher. He was the longest-living member of the research team which performed nuclear research in Germany during the Second World War, under Werner Heisenberg's leadership...

    , and Karl Wirtz
    Karl Wirtz
    Karl Eugen Julius Wirtz was a German nuclear physicist. He was arrested by the allied British and American Armed Forces and incarcerated at Farm Hall for six months in 1945 under Operation Epsilon.-Education:...

     Untersuchungen mit neuen Schichtenanordnungen aus U-metall und Paraffin G-127 (March 1942)
  • Robert Döpel Bericht über Unfälle beim Umgang mit Uranmetall G-135 (9 July 1942)
  • Werner Heisenberg Bemerkungen zu dem geplanten halbtechnischen Versuch mit 1,5 to D2O und 3 to 38-Metall G-161 (31 July 1942)
  • Werner Heisenberg, Fritz Bopp, Erich Fischer, Carl-Friedrich von Weizsäcker
    Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker
    Carl Friedrich Freiherr von Weizsäcker was a German physicist and philosopher. He was the longest-living member of the research team which performed nuclear research in Germany during the Second World War, under Werner Heisenberg's leadership...

    , and Karl Wirtz Messungen an Schichtenanordnungen aus 38-Metall und Paraffin G-162 (30 October 1942)
  • Robert Döpel, K. Döpel, and Werner Heisenberg Der experimentelle Nachweis der effektiven Neutronenvermehrung in einem Kugel-Schichten-System aus D2O und Uran-Metall G-136 (July 1942)
  • Werner Heisenberg Die Energiegewinnung aus der Atomkernspaltung G-217 (6 May 1943)
  • Fritz Bopp, Walther Bothe
    Walther Bothe
    Walther Wilhelm Georg Bothe was a German nuclear physicist, who shared the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1954 with Max Born....

    , Erich Fischer
    Erich Fischer
    Erich Horst Fischer was a German experimental physicist. He worked at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Physics and contributed to the German nuclear energy project, also known as the Uranium Club...

    , Erwin Fünfer, Werner Heisenberg, O. Ritter, and Karl Wirtz
    Karl Wirtz
    Karl Eugen Julius Wirtz was a German nuclear physicist. He was arrested by the allied British and American Armed Forces and incarcerated at Farm Hall for six months in 1945 under Operation Epsilon.-Education:...

     Bericht über einen Versuch mit 1.5 to D2O und U und 40 cm Kohlerückstreumantel (B7) G-300 (3 January 1945)
  • Robert Döpel, K. Döpel, and Werner Heisenberg Die Neutronenvermehrung in einem D2O-38-Metallschichtensystem G-373 (March 1942)

Publications



Collected bibliographies
  • Cassidy, David C. Werner Heisenberg : A Bibliography of His Writings, Second, Expanded Edition (Whittier, 2001)
  • Cassidy, David Werner Heisenberg: A Bibliography of His Writings, 1922–1929, Expanded Edition HTML Version PDF Version
  • Mott, N. and R. Peierls Werner Heisenberg, Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society Volume 23, 213-251 (1977)
  • Anna Ludovico, Effetto Heisenberg. La rivoluzione scientifica che ha cambiato la storia, Roma: Armando 2001, p. 224 ISBN 88-8358-182-2.
  • Barbara Blum, Helmut Heisenberg, Anna Ludovico, Per Heisenberg, Roma: Aracne 2006, p. 96 ISBN 88-548-0636-6

Selected articles:
  • A. Sommerfeld and W. Heisenberg Eine Bemerkung über relativistische Röntgendubletts und Linienschärfe, Z. Phys. Volume 10, 393-398 (1922)

  • A. Sommerfeld and W. Heisenberg Die Intensität der Mehrfachlinien und ihrer Zeeman-Komponenten, Z. Phys. Volume 11, 131-154 (1922)

  • M. Born and W. Heisenberg Über Phasenbeziehungen bei den Bohrschen Modellen von Atomen und Molekeln, Z. Phys. Volume 14, 44-55 (1923)

  • M. Born and W. Heisenberg Die Elektronenbahnen im angeregten Heliumatom, Z. Phys. Volume 16, 229-243 (1923)

  • M. Born and W. Heisenberg Zur Quantentheorie der Molekeln, Ann. d. Physik Volume 74, Number 4, 1-31 (1924)

  • W. Heisenberg Über Stabilität und Turbulenz von Flüssigkeitsströmmen (Diss.), Ann. Physik Volume 74, Number 4, 577-627 (1924)

  • M. Born and W. Heisenberg Über den Einfluss der Deformierbarekit der Ionen auf optische und chemische Konstanten. I., Z. Phys. Volume 23, 388-410 (1924)

  • W. Heisenberg Über eine Abänderung der formalin Regeln der Quantentheorie beim Problem der anomalen Zeeman-Effekte, Z. Phys. Volume 26, 291-307 (1924)

  • W. Heisenberg, Über quantentheoretische Umdeutung kinematischer und mechanischer Beziehungen
    Über quantentheoretische Umdeutung kinematischer und mechanischer Beziehungen
    "Über quantentheoretische Umdeutung kinematischer und mechanischer Beziehungen" was a breakthrough paper in quantum mechanics written by Werner Heisenberg...

    , Zeitschrift für Physik, 33, 879-893 (1925). The paper was received on 29 July 1925. [English translation in: B. L. van der Waerden, editor, Sources of Quantum Mechanics (Dover Publications, 1968) ISBN 0-486-61881-1 (English title: Quantum-Theoretical Re-interpretation of Kinematic and Mechanical Relations).] This is the first paper in the famous trilogy which launched the matrix mechanics
    Matrix mechanics
    Matrix mechanics is a formulation of quantum mechanics created by Werner Heisenberg, Max Born, and Pascual Jordan in 1925.Matrix mechanics was the first conceptually autonomous and logically consistent formulation of quantum mechanics. It extended the Bohr Model by describing how the quantum jumps...

     formulation of quantum mechanics.

  • M. Born and P. Jordan, Zur Quantenmechanik, Zeitschrift für Physik, 34, 858-888 (1925). The paper was received on 27 September 1925. [English translation in: B. L. van der Waerden, editor, Sources of Quantum Mechanics (Dover Publications, 1968) ISBN 0-486-61881-1 (English title: On Quantum Mechanics).] This is the second paper in the famous trilogy which launched the matrix mechanics
    Matrix mechanics
    Matrix mechanics is a formulation of quantum mechanics created by Werner Heisenberg, Max Born, and Pascual Jordan in 1925.Matrix mechanics was the first conceptually autonomous and logically consistent formulation of quantum mechanics. It extended the Bohr Model by describing how the quantum jumps...

     formulation of quantum mechanics.

  • M. Born, W. Heisenberg, and P. Jordan, Zur Quantenmechanik II, Zeitschrift für Physik, 35, 557-615 (1925). The paper was received on 16 November 1925. [English translation in: B. L. van der Waerden, editor, Sources of Quantum Mechanics (Dover Publications, 1968) ISBN 0-486-61881-1] This is the third paper in the famous trilogy which launched the matrix mechanics
    Matrix mechanics
    Matrix mechanics is a formulation of quantum mechanics created by Werner Heisenberg, Max Born, and Pascual Jordan in 1925.Matrix mechanics was the first conceptually autonomous and logically consistent formulation of quantum mechanics. It extended the Bohr Model by describing how the quantum jumps...

     formulation of quantum mechanics.

  • W. Heisenberg Über den anschulichen Inhalt der quantentheoretischen Kinematik und Mechanik, Z. Phys. Volume 43, 172-198 (1927)

  • W. Heisenberg Zur Theorie des Ferromagnetismus, Z. Phys. Volume 49, 619-636 (1928)

  • W. Heisenberg and W. Pauli Zur Quantentheorie der Wellenfelder, Z. Phys. Volume 56, 1-61 (1929)

  • W. Heisenberg and W. Pauli Zur Quantentheorie der Wellenfelder. II., Z. Phys. Volume 59, 168-190 (1930)

  • W. Heisenberg Über den Bau der Atomkerne. I., Z. Phys. Volume 77, 1-11 (1932)

  • W. Heisenberg Über den Bau der Atomkerne. II., Z. Phys. Volume 78, 156-164 (1932)

  • W. Heisenberg Über den Bau der Atomkerne. III., Z. Phys. Volume 80, 587-596 (1933)

  • W. Heisenberg Bemerkungen zur Diracschen Theorie des Positrons, Zeitschrift für Physik Volume 90, Numbers 3-4, 209-231 (1934). The author was cited as being at Leipzig. The paper was received on 21 June 1934.

  • W. Heisenberg Über die ‘Schauer’ in der Kosmischen Strahlung, Forsch. Fortscher. Volume 12, 341-342 (1936)

  • W. Heisenberg and H. Euler Folgerungen aus der Diracschen Theorie des Positrons, Zeitschr. Phys. Volume 98, Numbers 11-12, 714-732 (1936). The authors were cited as being at Leipzig. The paper was received on 22 December 1935. A translation of this paper has been done by W. Korolevski and H. Kleinert: arXiv:physics/0605038v1.

  • W. Heisenberg Zur Theorie der ‘Schauer’ in der Höhenstrahlung, Z. Phys. Volume 101, 533-540 (1936)

  • W. Heisenberg Der Durchgang sehr energiereicher Korpuskeln durch den Atomkern, Ber. Sächs, Akad. Wiss. Volume 89, 369; Die Naturwissenschaften
    Die Naturwissenschaften
    Naturwissenschaften is a monthly peer-reviewed scientific journal published by Springer on behalf of several learned societies.- History :...

    Volume 25, 749-750 (1937)

  • W. Heisenberg Theoretische Untersuchungen zur Ultrastrahlung, Verh. Stsch. physical. Ges. Volume 18, 50 (1937)

  • W. Heisenberg Die Absorption der durchdringenden Komponente der Höhenstrahlung, Ann. Phys. Volume 33, 594-599 (1938)

  • W. Heisenberg Der Durchgang sehr energiereicher Korpuskeln durch den Atomkern, Nuovo Cimento Volume 15, 31-34; Verh. Dtsch. physik. Ges. Volume 19, 2 (1938)

  • W. Heisenberg Die beobachtbaren Grössen in der Theorie der Elementarteilchen. I., Z. Phys. Volumne 120, 513-538 (1943)

  • W. Heisenberg Die beobachtbaren Grössen in der Theorie der Elementarteilchen. II., Z. Phys. Volumne 120, 673-702 (1943)

  • W. Heisenberg Die beobachtbaren Grössen in der Theorie der Elementarteilchen. III., Z. Phys. Volumne 123, 93-112 (1944)

  • W. Heisenberg Zur Theorie der Supraleitung, Forsch. Fortschr. Volumes 21/23, 243-244 (1947); Z. Naturf. Volume 2a, 185-201 (1947)

  • W. Heisenberg Das elektrodynamische Verhalten der Supraleiter, Z. Naturf. Volume 3a, 65-75 (1948)

  • M. von Laue and W. Heisenberg Das Barlowsche Rad aus supraleitendem Material, Z. Phys. Volume 124, 514-518 (1948)

  • W. Heisenberg Zur statistischen Theorie der Turbulenz, Z. Phys. Volume 124, 628-657 (1948)

  • W. Heisenberg On the theory of statistical and isotropic turbulence, Proc. R. Soc. London A Volume 195, 402-406 (1948)

  • W. Heisenberg Bemerkungen um Turbulenzproblem, Z. Naturf. Volume 3a, 434-437 (1948)

  • W. Heisenberg Production of mesons showers, Nature, Lond. Volume 164, 65-67 (1949)

  • W. Heisenberg Die Erzeugung von Mesonen in Vielfachprozessen, Nuovo Cimento Volume 6 (Supplement), 493-497 (1949)

  • W. Heisenberg Über die Entstehung von Mesonen in Vielfachprozessen, Z. Phys. Volume 126, 569-582 (1949)

  • W. Heisenberg On the stability of laminar flow, Proc. International Congress Mathematicians Volume II, 292-296 (1950)

  • W. Heisenberg Bermerkungen zur Theorie der Vielfacherzeugung von Mesonen, Die Naturwissenschaften
    Die Naturwissenschaften
    Naturwissenschaften is a monthly peer-reviewed scientific journal published by Springer on behalf of several learned societies.- History :...

    Volume 39, 69 (1952)

  • W. Heisenberg Mesonenerzeugung als Stosswellenproblem, Z. Phys. Volume 133, 65-79 (1952)

  • W. Heisenberg The production of mesons in very high energy collisions, Nuovo Cimento Volume 12, Supplement, 96-103 (1955)

  • W. Heisenberg Development of concepts in the history of quantum theory, American Journal of Physics Volume 43, Number 5, 389-394 (1975). The substance of this article was presented by Heisenberg in a lecture at Harvard University.

Books

  • Werner Heisenberg, Carl Eckart
    Carl Eckart
    Carl Henry Eckart was an American physicist, physical oceanographer, geophysicist, and administrator. He co-developed the Wigner-Eckart theorem and is also known for the Eckart conditions in quantum mechanics.-Education:Eckart began college in 1919 at Washington University in St...

     (translator), and F.C. Hoyt (translator) The Physical Principles of the Quantum Theory (Dover, 1930)
  • Werner Heisenberg Das Naturbild der heutigen Physik (1955)
  • Werner Heisenberg Philosophic problems of nuclear science (Fawcett, 1966)
  • Werner Heisenberg Physics and Beyond: Encounters and Conversations (Harper & Row, 1971)
  • Werner Heisenberg and Jürgen Busche Quantentheorie und Philosophie: Vorlesungen und Aufsätze (Reclam, 1979)
  • Werner Heisenberg Philosophical Problems of Quantum Physics (Ox Bow, 1979)
  • Werner Heisenberg Physik und Philosophie: Weltperspektiven. (Ullstein Taschenbuchvlg., 1988)
  • Werner Heisenberg Encounters with Einstein (Princeton University, 1989)
  • Werner Heisenberg and F. S. C. Northrop
    F. S. C. Northrop
    Filmer Stuart Cuckow Northrop was an American philosopher. After receiving a B.A. from Beloit College in 1915, and an MA from Yale University in 1919, he went on to Harvard University where he earned another MA in 1922 and a Ph.D...

     Physics and Philosophy: The Revolution in Modern Science (Great Minds Series) (Prometheus, 1999)
  • Werner Heisenberg Der Teil und das Ganze: Gespräche im Umkreis der Atomphysik (Piper, 2001)
  • Werner Heisenberg Deutsche und Jüdische Physik (Piper, 2002)
  • Werner Heisenberg Physik und Philosophie (Hirzel, 2007)
  • Werner Heisenberg Physics and Philosophy: The Revolution in Modern Science (Harper Perennial Modern Classics, 2007) (full text of 1958 version)

Television

  • Breaking Bad
    Breaking Bad
    Breaking Bad is an American television drama series created and produced by Vince Gilligan. Set and produced in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Breaking Bad is the story of Walter White , a struggling high school chemistry teacher who is diagnosed with advanced lung cancer at the beginning of the series...

    protagonist, chemist
    Chemist
    A chemist is a scientist trained in the study of chemistry. Chemists study the composition of matter and its properties such as density and acidity. Chemists carefully describe the properties they study in terms of quantities, with detail on the level of molecules and their component atoms...

    /chemistry
    Chemistry
    Chemistry is the science of matter, especially its chemical reactions, but also its composition, structure and properties. Chemistry is concerned with atoms and their interactions with other atoms, and particularly with the properties of chemical bonds....

     teacher
    Teacher
    A teacher or schoolteacher is a person who provides education for pupils and students . The role of teacher is often formal and ongoing, carried out at a school or other place of formal education. In many countries, a person who wishes to become a teacher must first obtain specified professional...

    /methamphetamine
    Methamphetamine
    Methamphetamine is a psychostimulant of the phenethylamine and amphetamine class of psychoactive drugs...

     producer Walter White, adopts "Heisenberg" as his alias. This strategic choice effectively protects Walter's identity when his brother-in-law, DEA
    DEA
    DEA is the commonly used acronym for the Drug Enforcement Administration, a United States law enforcement agency.DEA or Dea may also refer to:- Organizations :* DEA , UK development education charity...

     agent Hank Schrader, begins tracking down a formidable local meth producer known only as "Heisenberg".

  • In a 1990 episode of The Hogan Family
    The Hogan Family
    The Hogan Family is an American television situation comedy that aired from March 1, 1986 to July 20, 1991...

     ("Snowbound", aired 01/08/90), Heisenberg was the answer to a historical figure guessing game being played by the family. Clues of Heisenberg's life were given by younger brother Mark. No one guessed the answer correctly.

  • In the TV series "Star Trek", the writers included a device called "Heisenberg Compensators" in their teleporting devices, which theoretically compensate for the uncertainty in the subatomic measurements, thus making teleportation feasible.

  • In the TV series Twin Peaks
    Twin Peaks
    Twin Peaks is an American television serial drama created by David Lynch and Mark Frost. The series follows the investigation headed by FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper , of the murder of a popular teenager and homecoming queen, Laura Palmer...

    , Annie Blackburn (played by Heather Graham
    Heather Graham
    Heather Joan Graham is an American actress. She has appeared in such films as Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, Lost in Space, Bowfinger, From Hell, Anger Management, and The Hangover...

    ) quotes Heisenberg to the series' chief protagonist, Dale Cooper
    Dale Cooper
    FBI Special agent Dale Bartholomew Cooper is a fictional character from the television series Twin Peaks, portrayed by Kyle MacLachlan. He is the lead protagonist of the series, and briefly appears in the prequel film Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me....

     (played by Kyle MacLachlan
    Kyle MacLachlan
    Kyle Merritt MacLachlan is an American actor. MacLachlan is best known for his roles in cult films Blue Velvet as Jeffrey Beaumont, Showgirls as Zack Carey, as Paul Atreides in Dune, and Ray Manzarek in the Oliver Stone film The Doors...

    ): "What we observe is not nature itself, but nature exposed to our method of questioning." (Season two, episode 20) This quote was originally delivered during a series of lectures at the University of St. Andrews, Scotland in the Winter of 1955-1956.

  • In The Big Bang Theory
    The Big Bang Theory
    The Big Bang Theory is an American sitcom created by Chuck Lorre and Bill Prady, both of whom serve as executive producers on the show, along with Steven Molaro. All three also serve as head writers...

     episode, The Monopolar Expidition, Sheldon compares himself as a Heisenberg Particle, as he cannot perceive both his position nor his momentum.

Further reading



  • Born, Max The statistical interpretation of quantum mechanics. Nobel Lecture – 11 December 1954.
  • Cassidy, David C. Werner Heisenberg : A Bibliography of His Writings, Second, Expanded Edition (Whittier, 2001)
  • Cassify, David C. Heisenberg, Uncertainty and the Quantum Revolution, Scientific American, May 1992, pp. 106–112 (online)
  • Dörries, Matthias Michael Frayn's ‘Copenhagen’ in Debate: Historical Essays and Documents on the 1941 Meeting Between Niels Bohr and Werner Heisenberg (University of California, 2005)
  • Fischer, Ernst P. Werner Heisenberg: Das selbstvergessene Genie (Piper, 2002)
  • Heisenberg, Werner "A Scientist's case for the Classics" (Harper's Magazine, May 1958, p. 25-29)
  • Heisenberg, Werner Across the Frontiers (Harper & Row, 1974)
  • Kleint, Christian and Gerald Wiemer Werner Heisenberg im Spiegel seiner Leipziger Schüler und Kollegen (Leipziger Universitätsverlag, 2005)
  • Papenfuß, Dietrich, Dieter Lüst
    Dieter Lüst
    Dieter Lüst is a German physicist, full professor for mathematical physics at the Ludwig Maximilians University of Munich since 2004 and a director of the Max Planck Institute for Physics in Munich. His research focusses on string theory...

    , and Wolfgang P. Schleich 100 Years Werner Heisenberg: Works and Impact (Wiley-VCH, 2002)
  • Rechenberg, Helmut und Gerald Wiemers Werner Heisenberg (1901–1976), Schritte in die neue Physik (Sax-Verlag Beucha, 2001)
  • Schiemann, Gregor Werner Heisenberg (C.H. Beck, 2008)
  • von Weizsäcker, Carl Friedrich and Bartel Leendert van der Waerden Werner Heisenberg (Hanser, Carl GmbH, 1977)
  • Rhodes, Richard
    Richard Rhodes
    Richard Lee Rhodes is an American journalist, historian, and author of both fiction and non-fiction , including the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Making of the Atomic Bomb , and most recently, The Twilight of the Bombs...

     The Making of the Atomic Bomb (Simon and Schuster, 1986)
  • Walker, Mark National Socialism and German Physics, Journal of Contemporary Physics Volume 24, 63-89 (1989)
  • Walker, Mark Nazi Science: Myth, Truth, and the German Atomic Bomb (Perseus, 1995)
  • Walker, Mark German Work on Nuclear Weapons, Historia Scientiarum; International Journal for the History of Science Society of Japan, Volume 14, Number 3, 164-181 (2005)

External links