Famous Austrian Physicists

A physicist is a scientist who is trained to study the interaction between matter and energy of the physical world. Though a degree in physics qualifies a person as a physicist, study of the subject is far and varied and does not but restrain physicists to but a single topic. There are many sub-fields in which they can specialize. Like every other country in the world, Austria too has had a long list of physicists, dealing in invention, analysis and improvement of the physical phenomenon. While some discovered new phenomenon, others developed the existing and still others analysed for newer creations. While Austrian Nobel laureates such as Philipp Eduard Anton von Lenard, Erin Schrodinger, Victor Francis Hess and Wolfgang Pauli are universally popular for their feats in physicists, the country has been home to many more skilful and immensely talented physicists such as Christian Doppler, Josef Finger, Johann Josef Loschmidt, Ernst Mach, Lise Meitner and Gernot Zippe. Each of them has contributed immensely to the global platform of physics through their inventions, discoveries, analysis and studies. Find out in details about the life and works of famous Austrian physicist through this write-up.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 Erwin Schrödinger

Erwin Schrödinger
6
Famous As: Physicist
Birthdate: August 12, 1887
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Erdberg, Vienna, Austria
Died: January 4, 1961
Austrian physicist Erwin Schrödinger, is best known for the "Schrödinger's cat" experiment, or the Schrodinger equation. His book What Is Life? explored genetics through physics. The Nobel Prize winner also wrote on a variety of topics, such as color theory and thermodynamics, and tried to create a unified field theory.

 2 Wolfgang Pauli

Wolfgang Pauli
5
Famous As: Physicist
Birthdate: April 25, 1900
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: December 15, 1958

Nobel Prize-winning Austrian physicist Wolfgang Pauli is remembered for his contribution to quantum physics and for laying down the Pauli principle. While he was initially married to a cabaret dancer, the marriage ended in a divorce after a year. His written works are considered classics in science.

 3 Lise Meitner

Lise Meitner
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Famous As: Physicist
Birthdate: November 7, 1878
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: October 27, 1968

Lise Meitner was an Austrian-Swedish physicist best remembered for her contributions that led to the discoveries of nuclear fission and the element protactinium. Nicknamed the German Marie Curie by Albert Einstein, Lise Meitner became the second woman in the world to receive a doctorate in physics in 1905. In 1997, chemical element 109 meitnerium was named in her honor.

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 4 Ludwig Boltzmann

Ludwig Boltzmann
4
Famous As: Physicist
Birthdate: February 20, 1844
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Vienna
Died: September 5, 1906

Austrian physicist and philosopher, Ludwig Boltzmann, played a key role in the development of statistical mechanics. As a young man, he was appointed a professor of mathematical physics at the University of Graz. He worked extensively with other physicists over the course of his brilliant academic career. He suffered from bipolar disorder and died by suicide in 1906. 

 5 Ernst Mach

Ernst Mach
5
Famous As: Physicist
Birthdate: February 18, 1838
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Brno, Czech Republic
Died: February 19, 1916

Austrian physicist and philosopher Ernst Mach is remembered for his contributions to the study of shock waves. He is also credited for discovering a non-acoustic function of the inner ear that helps control human balance. As a philosopher of science, he is considered a major influence on logical positivism and American pragmatism. 

 6 Paul Ehrenfest

Paul Ehrenfest
3
Famous As: He made major contributions to the field of statistical mechanics and its relations
Birthdate: January 18, 1880
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: September 25, 1933

Paul Ehrenfest was an Austrian-Dutch theoretical physicist. A close associate of Albert Einstein, whom he had met during his visit to Prague in 1912, Ehrenfest frequently hosted Einstein in Leiden where he was serving as a professor. Paul Ehrenfest is best remembered for his work in the field of statistical mechanics.

 7 Fred Singer

Fred Singer
3
Famous As: Physicist
Birthdate: September 27, 1924
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: April 6, 2020

Austrian-American physicist and University of Virginia environmental sciences professor Fred Singer was one of the first to deny the harmful effects of global warming and second-hand smoking. He co-authored books such as Climate Change Reconsidered and pioneered numerous studies on space research and atmospheric physics. He also established the SEPP.

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 8 Richard von Mises

Richard von Mises
2
Famous As: Mathematician, Physicist, Philosopher, Engineer, University teacher
Birthdate: April 19, 1883
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Lviv
Died: July 14, 1953

Richard von Mises was an Austrian Jewish scientist and mathematician. He is known for his work on solid mechanics, aerodynamics, aeronautics, fluid mechanics, and probability theory. He was the Gordon McKay Professor of Aerodynamics and Applied Mathematics at Harvard University. He is the one who proposed the now-famous "birthday problem" in probability theory. He was married to mathematician Hilda Geiringer.  

 9 Walter Kohn

Walter Kohn
2
Famous As: Physicist and Chemist
Birthdate: March 9, 1923
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: April 19, 2016

Walter Kohn was an Austrian-American theoretical physicist and theoretical chemist. He and fellow theoretical chemist John Pople were jointly awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1998. Kohn made a major contribution to the development of density functional theory. He had an illustrious academic career and was a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. 

 10 Anton Zeilinger

Anton Zeilinger
2
Famous As: Physicist, Quantum physicist, Academic, University teacher, Non-fiction writer
Birthdate: May 20, 1945
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ried im Innkreis

Anton Zeilinger, a noted Austrian quantum physicist who mostly researches in the area of fundamental aspects and applications of quantum entanglement, was conferred with the Inaugural Isaac Newton Medal by the Institute of Physics for his significant contributions in the field. He presently serves as Senior Scientist at the IQOQI and as professor of physics at the University of Vienna.

 11 Heinz von Foerster

Heinz von Foerster
2
Famous As: Scientist, Physicist, University teacher
Birthdate: November 13, 1911
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Vienna
Died: October 2, 2002

 12 Victor Weisskopf

Victor Weisskopf
2
Famous As: Physicist
Birthdate: September 19, 1908
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: April 22, 2002

 13 Josef Stefan

Josef Stefan
1
Famous As: Physicist
Birthdate: March 24, 1835
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Klagenfurt, Austria
Died: January 7, 1893

Best known for originating the Stefan-Boltzmann law, Josef Stefan was an Austrian physicist, who published nearly eighty scientific papers in his life time. Starting his career as a lecturer in mathematical physics at University of Vienna, he rose to become director of Physical Institute, meanwhile empirically deriving the Stefan-Boltzmann law, thus paving the way for further work on blackbody radiation.

 14 Carl Auer, Freiherr von Welsbach

Carl Auer, Freiherr von Welsbach
1
Famous As: Scientist
Birthdate: September 1, 1858
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: August 4, 1929

 15 Joseph Loschmidt

Joseph Loschmidt
1
Famous As: Scientist
Birthdate: March 15, 1821
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Austrian Empire
Died: July 8, 1895

 16 Karl Herzfeld

Karl Herzfeld
1
Famous As: Physicist
Birthdate: February 24, 1892
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Vienna
Died: June 3, 1978

 17 Claire F. Gmachi

Claire F. Gmachi
0
Famous As: University teacher, Engineer
Birthdate: 1967 AD
Birthplace: Salzburg, Austria

An electrical engineer professor at the Princeton Institute of Materials, Claire F. Gmachi is best known for her research on quantum devices, such as lasers, and their use in the health and environment sectors. She also heads the education program of MIRTHE, a group of 6 universities, as its director.

 18 Alexander Meissner

Alexander Meissner
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Famous As: Engineer
Birthdate: September 14, 1883
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: January 3, 1958

Austrian engineer and physicist Alexander Meissner made remarkable contributions to the development of the radio telegraphy system with his studies on antenna design. He was the first to design a rotary radio beacon and made pioneering discoveries in the amplification of high-frequency radio signals. He also taught at the Technical University of Berlin.

 19 Martin Deutsch

Martin Deutsch
0
Famous As: Professor
Birthdate: January 29, 1917
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: August 16, 2002