Physicist who Got Bankrupted in Germany Hyperinflation after World war 2 – A Physics Nobel Laureate

Physicist who Got Bankrupted in Germany Hyperinflation after World war 2 – A Physics Nobel Laureate

He could not completed his school education but late he became Physics Nobel Laureate. He was unfairly expelled from high school when one of his teachers intercepted a caricature of one of the teachers, which was drawn by someone else. Without a high school diploma, He could only attend university in the Netherlands as a visitor. Upon hearing that he could enter the Federal Polytechnic Institute in Zurich , he passed the entrance examination and began studies there as a student of mechanical engineering. In 1869, he graduated with a PhD from the University of Zurich; once there, he became a favorite student of Professors.  

He did not seek patents for his discoveries, holding the view that it should be publicly available without charge. He donated large sum of Money earned for research works. However, With the inflation following World War I, He fell into bankruptcy later in life.


Physics Nobel Laureates Wilhelm Conrad RöntgenHe was the 1st Physics Nobel Laureate Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen. Röntgen was awarded Nobel Prize in Physics For discovery of X rays, which is considered as topmost invention of 20th century. He refused to take out patents related to his discovery of X-rays, as he wanted society to benefit from practical applications of this discovery.

He was born in a family of a German merchant and cloth manufacturer. His mother was Dutch and at age 3, his family moved to Holland where her family lived. Röntgen attended high school in UtrechtNetherlands; Utrecht Technical School. 

Utrecth Technical School

Following his studies, Wilhelm Röntgen worked at universities in Strasbourg and Würzburg, where he carried out his Nobel Prize-awarded research. In 1900 Röntgen transferred to the University of Munich, where he remained for the rest of his life. Wilhelm Röntgen married Bertha Ludwig in 1872. The couple later adopted the daughter of Bertha’s brother.

In 1895, Wilhelm Röntgen studied cathode radiation. Although the apparatus was screened off, he noticed a faint light on light-sensitive screens that happened to be close by. Further investigations revealed that this was caused by a penetrating, previously unknown type of radiation. X-ray radiation became a powerful tool for physical experiments and examining the body’s interior.

After Bankruptcy, the Nobel Laureate spended his final years at his country home near Munich.  Röntgen died on 10 February 1923 from  colorectal cancer. In keeping with his will, all his personal and scientific correspondence was destroyed upon his death.

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