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Karl Schwarzschild

Born: 9-Oct-1873
Birthplace: Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Died: 11-May-1916
Location of death: Potsdam, Germany
Cause of death: Illness [1]
Remains: Buried, Göttinger Stadtfriedhof, Göttingen, Germany

Gender: Male
Religion: Jewish
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Astronomer, Physicist

Nationality: Germany
Executive summary: Black holes, Schwarzschild radius

Military service: German Army (1893-94 and 1914-16, Lt.)

Physicist and astronomer Karl Schwarzschild developed the concept of black holes, showing that when stars undergo gravitational collapse and shrink below a certain size (now called the Schwarzschild radius) the gravitational pull becomes so great that not even light can escape. He was able to use photographic plates to determine the apparent magnitude of stars, theorized that space is non-Euclidean, determined the diameters of particles in comets' tails, and calculated the first rigorous solution to Albert Einstein's field equations. His sister married physicist Robert Emden. Schwarzschild is the namesake of the German Astronomical Society's Schwarzschild Medal, and his son, astronomer Martin Schwarzschild, was the first recipient of this honor.


[1] Pemphigus (an autoimmune disorder).

Father: Moses Martin Schwarzschild (stockbroker)
Mother: Henrietta Francisca Sabel Schwarzschild
Brother: Alfred Schwarzschild (artist)
Brother: Hermann Schwarzschild (agriculturalist)
Sister: Klara Schwarzschild Emden
Brother: Otto Schwarzschild (financier)
Brother: Robert Schwarzschild (industrialist)
Wife: Else Posenbach Schwarzschild (m. 22-Oct-1909, d. 1950, three children)
Son:
Martin Schwarzschild (astronomer, b. 1912, d. 1997)
Daughter: Agathe Schwarzschild Thornton (literature teacher)
Son: Alfred Schwarzschild

    High School: Frankfurt Gymnasium, Frankfurt, Germany (1889)
    University: BS, University of Strasbourg (1893)
    University: PhD, University of Munich (1896)
    Scholar: Von Kuffner Observatory (1896-99)
    Teacher: Astronomy, University of Munich (1899-1901)
    Teacher: Astronomy, University of Göttingen (1901-02)
    Professor: Astronomy, University of Göttingen (1902-09)
    Administrator: Director of Göttingen Observatory, University of Göttingen (1901-09)
    Administrator: Director of Astrophysical Observatory, Potsdam, Germany (1909-14)

    German Astronomical Society
    German Academy of Sciences
    Royal Astronomical Society
    Asteroid Namesake 837 Schwarzschilda

Author of books:
Astronomie (Astronomy) (1905)
Gesammelte Werke (Collected Works) (1992, posthumous)


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