Lord Rayleigh

(1842—1919) experimental and mathematical physicist

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(1842–1919; b. Maldon, England; d. Witham, England)

English mathematical physicist awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1904. Strutt graduated from Cambridge U in 1865 and joined the faculty. In 1871 he published his theory of scattering which explained why the sky was blue. In 1873, following his father's death, he became the third Baron Rayleigh. After a period managing his 7 000-acre estates he returned to Cambridge as Head of the Cavendish Laboratory (1879–84). From 1887 to 1905 he was Professor of Natural Philosophy at the Royal Institution. His early work in mathematical physics extended to cover a wide range of physical problems. He was President of the LMS in 1876 and was awarded its de Morgan Medal in 1900. He was elected FRS in 1873 and was awarded the Society's Royal Medal in 1882 and its Copley Medal in 1899, serving as the Society's President from 1905 to 1908. He was elected FRSE in 1886. He was awarded the Order of Merit in 1902 and was appointed Chancellor of Cambridge U in 1908. There are craters named after him on both the Moon and Mars.

Subjects: Probability and Statistics.

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