Paul Drude (1863–1906)


  • In commemoration of Paul Drude (1863–1906)


In July 1906 the physics community in Germany was shocked by the sudden death of Paul Drude, one of the key figures of a flourishing field. At the age of almost 43 years he had reached the summit of his career, having just been promoted to Director of the Physics Institute in Berlin and member of the Prussian Academy of Sciences. In the course of his academic research Drude covered the observation of macroscopic phenomena as well as the understanding of microscopic processes; he developed advanced methods to acquire reliable experimental data but also unified mathematical descriptions; he covered thermodynamics and statistical physics as well as optics and transport theory. Being always well grounded in classical physics he was also one of the first modern physicists.