Science Birthdays, April 9

4/9/1770          Thomas Seebeck         physicist          he found that if two different metals were attached and held at two different temperatures an electrical current would flow. Called the seebeck effect, it is also called thermoelectricity or getting electrical energy from heat, he died in 1831 at age 61.

4/9/1865          Charles Proteus Steinmetz      physicist, led a lonely, solitary life as a hunchback, he never considered marriage because he didn’t want to pass on his deformity, his father and grandfather also had it, he changed his name from Karl to Charles when he emigrated to the united states, he added the name Proteus as a middle name, he is recognized as one of America’s foremost electrical geniuses, also an eccentric, he got angry when the lab banned smoking, he smoked cigars, He said “no smoking, no Steinmetz,” he was a very gentle man who once shivered because he wouldn’t use the stove, (there was a family of mice living in it). He often did his work and thinking in a canoe, he worked out using complex numbers, the complete  mathematical explanation of Tesla’s AC current. He refused anything above a modest salary even though he had over 200 patents. He died in 1923 at the age of 58.

4/9/1903          Gregory Pincus           biologist          discovered the birth control pill, he died in 1967 at age 64.

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