Johann Jakob Balmer


Related Overviews

Niels Bohr (1885—1962) Danish physicist and pioneer in quantum physics


'Johann Jakob Balmer' can also refer to...


More Like This

Show all results sharing this subject:

  • Science and Mathematics


Show Summary Details

Quick Reference

(1825–1898) Swiss mathematician

Born in Lausanne, Switzerland, Balmer was not a professional scientist but worked as a school teacher in Basel from 1859. In 1885 he discovered that there was a simple mathematical formula that gave the wavelengths of the spectral lines of hydrogen – the Balmer series. This formula proved to be of great importance in atomic spectroscopy and in developing the atomic theory. Balmer arrived at his result purely from empirical evidence and was unable to explain why it yielded correct answers. Not until the further development of the atomic theory by Niels Bohr and others was this possible.

Subjects: Science and Mathematics.

Reference entries

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.