Eine neue Bestimmung der Molekuldimesionen AND Zur Theorie der Brownschen Bewegung.

Publisher Information: Leipzig: 1906. Einstein, Albert (1879-1955). (1) Eine neue Bestimmung der Molekuldimensionen. In Ann. d. Physik, 4th series, 19 (1906): 289-306. (2) Zur Theorie der Brownschen Bewegung. In ibid.:371-381. Whole volume, 8vo. viii, 1080pp. 5 plates. 213 x 143 mm. Original cloth, spine faded, split in upper half of spine, inner hinge cracking. Very good. Book Id: 38892

(1) First Edition in Journal Form, Revised, of Einstein's doctoral thesis, ranked by his biographer as being on the same level as his 1905 papers on relativity, the light quanta and Brownian motion. In his thesis, Einstein presented a new theoretical method for determining molecular radii and Avogadro's number (the number of atoms or molecules needed to make up a mass equal to a substance's atomic or molecular weight, in grams). The thesis appeared in print in the spring of 1905; in the journal version, published at the beginning of 1906, Einstein added a brief appendix containing an improved value of Avogadro's number.

Einstein's biographer, Abraham Pais, wrote of Einstein's thesis as follows:

"It is not sufficiently realized that Einstein's thesis is one of his most fundamental papers. Histories and biographies invariably refer to 1905 as the miraculous year because of his article on relativity, the light-quantum, and Brownian motion. In my opinion, the thesis is on a par with the Brownian motion article. In fact, in some-not all-respects, his results on Brownian motion are by-products of his thesis work (emphasis ours). This goes a long way toward explaining why the paper on Brownian motion was received by the Annalen der Physik on May 11, 1905, only eleven days after the thesis had been completed.

"Three weeks after the thesis was accepted, this same journal received a copy [of the thesis] for publication. It was published only after Einstein supplied a brief addendum in January 1906. . . . As a result of these various delays, the thesis appeared as a paper in the Annalen der Physik only after the Brownian motion article had come out in the same journal. This may have helped create the impression in some quarters that the relation between diffusion and viscosity-a very important equation due to Einstein and Sutherland-was first obtained in Einstein's paper on Brownian motion. Actually, it first appeared in his thesis . . . ."

"Quite apart from the fundamental nature of some results obtained in the thesis, there is another reason why this paper is of uncommon interest: it has had more widespread practical applications than any other paper Einstein ever wrote . . . . [T]he thesis, dealing with bulk rheological properties of particle suspensions, contains results which have an extraordinarily wide range of applications. They are relevant to the construction industry (the motion of sand particles in cement mixes), to the dairy industry (the motion of casein micelles in cow's milk), and to ecology (the motion of aerosol particles in clouds), to mention but a few scattered examples. Einstein might have enjoyed hearing this, since he was quite fond of applying physics to practical situations" (Pais, Subtle is the Lord, pp. 89-90).

Pais notes that during the period 1970-1974, the 1906 journal version of Einstein's thesis was cited four times more often than his 1916 paper on general relativity, and eight times more often than his 1905 paper on light quanta.

(2) First Edition of Einstein's second paper on Brownian motion, containing two further methods for finding Avogadro's number. This was the first of his papers on the subject to include the term "Brownian motion" in the title. Pais, pp. 95, 98.


Price: $1,500.00

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