Georg Ohm

 

Georg Ohm

Georg Simon Ohm, more commonly known as Georg Ohm, was a German physicist, best known for his “Ohm’s Law”, which implies that the current flow through a conductor is directly proportional to the potential difference (voltage) and inversely proportional to the resistance. The physical unit of electrical resistance, the Ohm, also was named after him.

Early Life and Education:

Born in 1789 in the university town of Erlangen, Bavaria, his younger Martin Ohm also became a famous mathematician. Georg Ohm studied mathematics and physics at Erlangen University. For economical reasons, he had to do some teaching jobs while studying, which he found quite bothering.

Contributions and Achievements:

When higher degrees of political instability were observed in the early 1800s were seen in Bavaria as the struggle against Napoleon rose, Ohm chose to leave native Bavaria in 1817 for Cologne, where he attained a Readership at the university. Ohm started passionately working on the conductivity of metals and the behavior of electrical circuits. So much that he quit teaching in Cologne and got settled in his brother’s house in Berlin.

After extensive research, he wrote “Die galvanische Kette, mathematisch bearbeitet”, which formulated the relationship between voltage (potential), current and resistance in an electrical circuit:

I = EIR

After initial criticism, most particularly by Hegel, the noted creator of German Idealism, who rejected the authenticity of the experimental approach of Ohm, the “glory” finally came in 1841 when the Royal Society of London honored him with the Copley Medal for his extraordinary efforts. Several German scholars, including an adviser to the State on the development of telegraphy, also recognized Ohm’s work a few months later.

The pertinence of Ohm’s Law to electrolytes and thermoelectric junctions and metallic conductors, was demonstrated recognized soon enough. The law still remains the most widely used and appreciated of all the rules related to the behavior of electrical circuits.

Later Life and Death:

Georg Ohm was made a foreign member of the Royal Society in 1842, and a full member of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and Humanities in 1845.

Ohm died on July 6, 1854. He was 65 years old.