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Richman Georg Wilhelm

( Russian physicist)

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Biography Richman Georg Wilhelm
born June 11, 1711 in Pernove. His father, a former Swedish rentmeyster in Dorpat, hid during the war with Sweden in Pernove, gave his son a good education, which young P. completed the in Germany, in Halle and Jena. In early 1730-ies P. returned to St. Petersburg as an educator of children of Count Osterman. In 1735 R. filed, the chief commander of the St. Petersburg Academy, Baron IA. Corfu, an essay on physics and was accepted into the academy with the title "student in the physical class", where he studied with Professor of Physics GV. Kraft and his assistant was "in the physical department". In 1740 R. was elevated to the rank of associate, and in 1741, meant "especially the works" and "good art", has been appointed, "not like the other", the second professor in the academy, with a salary of 500 rubles. In 1744, Kraft retired from the academy and P. took his place. Portfolio P. physics relate primarily issues of heat and electricity, and printed in "Commentarii Academiae Petropolitanae" (t. XIII) and in "Novi Commentarii" (t. I - III). In the teaching of heat P. first properly raised questions calorimetry, t. e. measuring quantities of heat, and gave reason to the method of mixing (cm. Calorimetry), its contribution in this regard properly evaluated Mach'om in his "Principien der Waermelehre" (1896). A number of papers. concerned the question of evaporation of liquids under different conditions and the freezing of water. Since 1745 R. begins to engage in electricity, in 1748, the Academy has been set aside, even for his electrical experiments, a separate room. When in 1752 appeared in the St. Petersburg Gazette, the first news about the experiments in. Franklin, proving that lightning storm phenomena are the phenomena of power, P. immediately took up the study of atmospheric electricity in the early summer of 1752 he built in his apartment unit to generate electricity from the storm clouds. The device consisted of an isolated sheet of iron, missed through the roof and ending in the room "electric gnomon", built on the idea of P. and presents a simple electroscope - the first ever built by measuring electrical appliance (cm. Ostwald, "Elektrochemie", 1896; device described in Watson "Philosoph. Transactions "in 1754, after the death of R.). During the summer of 1752 and summer 1753 R. tirelessly worked with his device, which has improved, giving him with a Leyden jar (cm. Capacitor), and the results of their work reported in the St. Petersburg Vedomosti, July 26, 1753, with a cloudless sky, going up to his instrument, R. was struck by lightning. The extraordinary death of P. caused in his time great excitement in the scientific world. Lomonosov, reporting and. Shuvalov death R., wrote: "P. died on a beautiful death, performing in their profession post. His memory will never silenced ". But at the same time worried "that this case has not been interpreted anti increments of Sciences". Academy has not found it possible to act on the forthcoming ceremony was a speech delivered on electricity "because of the case of the death of Professor R.". Many pamphlets appeared in Germany and France, who interpreted the death of P. and the danger of experiments on atmospheric electricity, some of them are written specifically to prove that the death of P. was not the punishment of God. See. P. Pekarsky "History of the Imperial Academy of Sciences" (t. I, St. Petersburg, 1870), "Materials for the history of the Academy of Sciences" (t. II - IX); "Livlandische Bibliothek von F. K. Hadebusch "(III, 22 - 29). A. G.

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