Guericke, Otto (Guericke Otto von)( German naturalist.)
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Biography Guericke, Otto (Guericke Otto von)
Born November 20, 1602 in Magdeburg. In 1617-1623 he studied law at Leipzig, Helmshtadskom, University of Jena, in 1623 - the mechanics and mathematics at the University of Leiden. On his return he was elected a member of the city council, was engaged in the construction of fortifications. In 1631 during the Thirty Years' War Magdeburg was destroyed, and Guericke had to leave the city. For 10 years he worked as an engineer in Erfurt, and then in Saxony. He was engaged in diplomatic activities, which largely contributed to the revival of his native city. For services to Marburg in 1646 was elected mayor, held the post for 30 years. In 1666 received a knighthood. In 1681 he moved to Hamburg, where he died May 11, 1686.
Despite the employment of public affairs, Guericke lifelong interest in natural sciences. Ever since his student years he worried about the problem of 'empty space'. Reflecting on it, he decided to experiment to test the possibility of creating a vacuum (vacuum), which led to his invention of an air pump (1650). In 1654 he demonstrated with the help of the existence of air pressure (the famous experiment with the "Magdeburg hemispheres"), determined its density, showed that the sound does not extend into the void that the animals are killed in a vacuum, etc.. In 1660 created one of the first electrostatic machines. It was a ball of sulfur-sized ball of medium size, planted on an iron axle, which at the touch of his hands during his rotation occurred electrification. With this device Guericke discovered electrostatic repulsion, the electric glow (electrified sulfur ball of light in the dark). Guericke constructed the first water barometer and used it for meteorological observations, invented a hygrometer, designed the air thermometer, manometer. Being a very busy man, he could not himself describe their experiences. This made him professor Wurzburg Academy K. Schott in several books published in 1657-1664. That work led Guericke Boyle put the experiments on the properties of gases. The results of their research Guericke published only in 1672 in the composition of the new so-called Magdeburg experiments on the empty space (Experimenta nova, ut vocantur, Magdeburgica de vacuo spatio, 1672).