The Nord Scholars – Part 1

Numerous people from the Nordic region have distinguished themselves in the field of science and in this blog, we will celebrate their work. Many of the fundamental laws of science have changed little since they were first written and many of the great philosophers of the Middle Ages

The beginning of the 20th Century was a prolific era for science with many Nordic scientists being at the very core of science development including, Niels Bohr, Albert Einstein, Ervin Scrodinger and Max Planck.

Much of the scientific research done today is to prove the theories of the past from the great philosophers. Nordic countries are no exception to this research and in the past both Sweden and Denmark were highly regarded as grand nations, and vital in the scientific community.

In this blog we endeavour to discover great Nordic scientist’s past and present, and learn about their discoveries and how they came about. It is not a definitive list but the greats are all mentioned and applauded for their work. 

Tyco Brahe

The first name on our list is Tyco Brahe who was a Danish nobleman. Noted for his study of the planets and his accurate observations. What is not a well-known fact is that Johannes Kepler studied under Brahe and it was after his death that Kepler released his Laws of Planetary Motion.

What is really amazing about the work of Brahe is that he did it without the aid of telescopes. Brahe formed Stjerneborg which is the observatory on the island of Hven, it was there he designed and built astronomical instruments as well as mechanical devices to help industries such as papermaking.

Ole Romer

Another Danish astronomer who worked at the Royal Observatory in Paris. It was while he was there that he used an astronomical measurement to calculate the Speed of Light. Romer observed Jupiter’s inner moon and deducted that it took twenty-two minutes for it to cross the Earth’s diameter.

In 1676 he demonstrated his theory that light traveled at a regular speed and not as it was thought at the time instantaneously. This theory was highly controversial at the time and many people were skeptical if it was true. 

Anders Celsius

This great Swedish mathematician and physicist was a professor of astronomy at Uppsala University in the mid-1730’s but it was in 1742 that he first proposed the Celsius temperature scale. Which still used today as, zero degrees means freezing point, and one hundred degrees is the temperature that water boils.

He did this by taking many geographical measurements of Sweden and noted that Scandinavia was slowly rising above sea level. This process had steadily been occurring since the melting of the most recent ice age. He was not flawless however in all his theories as he proposed that the Earth’s water was gradually evaporating! These great Nordic scientists have combined to offer great steps in science and in part two of this blog we look at even more of their countrymen who have advanced the field of science with their great effort and discoveries.