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Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen, Physicist

* March 27, 1845 in Lennep
† February 10, 1923 in Munich

Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen studied mechanical engineering, physics and aesthetics at the Federal Polytechnic Institute in Zurich and completed his studies with a diploma in mechanical engineering. As early as 1869 he gained his doctorate at the University of Zurich.

From 1870 to 1876, Röntgen worked as an assistant for August Kundt at the JMU and the University of Strasbourg. In 1874, he was habilitated at the University of Strasbourg and became an ordinary professor in 1876. From 1879 on he was ordinary professor at the University of Gießen before he accepted an appointment from the Chair of Physics at the JMU in 1888 as successor of Friedrich Kohlrausch. In 1893, Röntgen held the office of rector at the JMU. On November 8, 1895, Röntgen discovered the X-rays, which were later named after him, in the Physical Institute. For his far-reaching discovery he was awarded the first Nobel Prize in Physics.

Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen lived directly above his laboratory at Pleicher Ring 8/1, today’s Röntgenring 8. Nobel Prize Winners Wilhelm Wien and Klaus von Klitzing worked in the same building.