Among many things, Luis Alvarez invented a detonating device for the atomic bomb. The acclaimed physicist also co-discovered the East/West effect of cosmic rays, which is what led him to study nuclear physics in depth. During World War II, he created three radar systems including a high-altitude bombing system, a blind landing system and an early warning system.
Luis Alvarez graduated from the University of Chicago, eventually earning his PhD at the school in 1932. He later became part of the Manhattan Project, a government project to invent a nuclear weapon. Alvarez's discoveries and contributions won him the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1968. Alvarez held 22 patents during his lifetime and was also famed for developing a golf training machine specifically for President Eisenhower.
Later on in his life, he aided an exploration to find unearthed chambers in the pyramids in Egypt. Alvarez became interested in archaeology and geology through this expedition and began working with his son, a geology professor at Berkeley, to study dinosaurs and their extinction. Alvarez and his son were the first to publish the theory that dinosaurs may have become extinct due to an asteroid hitting the Earth more than 60 million years ago.Learn More
The modern bullet is based on a version invented in 1826 by Henri-Gustave Delvigne, a French infantry officer. Delvigne's bullet had a spherical shape and was rammed into a breech's rifling grooves.Full Answer >
The microwave oven was patented on October 8, 1945 by the company Raytheon. At the time, it was called the Radarange. It wasn't until 1967 that the microwave was more affordable and reasonably sized.Full Answer >
The foundations of calculus were developed concurrently by Sir Isaac Newton and Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz. Because Leibniz was more thoughtful in his notation, his style is more consistent with the notation used today.Full Answer >
The sociologist Herbert Spencer is credited with the phrase "survival of the fittest," which he applied to biological evolution years before Darwin's "Origin of Species," and also to the evolution of society. As an agnostic, he also rejected the notion of a divine being, at least insofar as it is possible to say anything meaningful (or empirical) about it.Full Answer >