Dead Guys in Science


Robert Boyle


It is Boyle's Law for which he remains most famous. This states that if the volume of a gas is decreased, the pressure increases proportionally.

Carl Scheele


In 1772, He independently discovered oxygen. He also discovered chlorine in 1774. He discovered molybdenum in 1778.

Antoine Lavoisier


Antoine Lavoisier studied the burning process. In 1774, he proposed the Combustion Theory. The Combustion Theory was based on sound mass measurements.

Joseph Priestley


It is said that Joseph Priestley also discovered oxygen in 1774.

Joseph Proust


He was best known for his discovery of the law of constant composition in 1794, stating that chemical compounds always combine in constant proportions.

John Dalton


John Dalton contributed to the development of the modern atomic theory. He also contributed to findings in the field of colorblindness. Specifically, in 1803 Dalton published the Law of Partial Pressures. The Law of Partial Pressures states “ that in a mixture of non-reacting gases, the total gas pressure is equal to the sum of the partial pressures of the individual gases”. As well, in 1803 proposed his own “atomic theory” using round atoms, and it was based upon measurable properties of mass.

Julius Plucker


Julius Plucker was a pioneer in the field of cathode rays. In 1858, he discovered the cathode ray tube. More importantly, his discoveries concerning cathode rays eventually lead to the discovery of the electron.

William Crookes

1869 - 1875

Around 1869-1875, Crookes invented the first Crookes tube (an electrical discharge tube). As well, he and other scientists discovered streams of electrons, known as cathode rays.

JJ Thomson


In 1897, JJ Thomson discovered the electron. As well, he discovered the isotope and the subatomic particle.

Marie and Pierre Curie


Marie and Pierre Curie are most commonly known for their findings in the field of radioactivity. This led to their discoveries of radium and polonium in 1898

Hans Geiger


In 1908, Geiger introduced the first successful detector of individual alpha particles.

Robert Millikan

1908 - 1909

Starting in 1908, while a professor at the University of Chicago, Millikan worked on an oil-drop experiment in which he measured the charge on a single electro

Ernest Marsden


In 1909, as a 20-year-old student at the University of Manchester, he met and began work under Ernest Rutherford. While still an undergraduate he conducted the famous Geiger–Marsden experiment, called the gold foil experiment, together with Hans Geiger under Rutherford's supervision.

Ernest Rutherford


In 1911, he was the first to discover that atoms have a small charged nucleus. In 1919, he proposed the existence of the neutron.

Frederick Soddy


In 1913, Frederick Soddy developed the concept of isotopes. It states that some elements exist in two or more forms; they have different atomic weights, but they are indistinguishable at the chemical level.

Jean Baptiste Perrin


In 1926, Perrin proved the discontinuity of matter. He also discovered sedimentation equilibrium. The discontinuity of matter was originally proposed by Albert Einstein, but he was unable to prove it. For the proving of the discontinuity of matter, Perrin was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

James Chadwick


He discovered the neutron in 1932. Neutrons are the particles without a positive nor negative charge.