Celebrities in Switzerland: Albert Einstein
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Einstein, Albert (1879 - 1955) Germany / ScientistZurich / ZH
EinsteinAlbert Einstein was born on March 14, 1879 in Ulm, Würtemberg, Germany and died on April 18, 1955 in Princeton, NJ, USA. Albert Einstein contributed more than any other scientist to the modern vision of physical reality. His theory of relativity is widely recognized for its revolutionary and dramatic impact in the world of science and mankind. It was developed when Einstein lived in Switzerland. Incidentally, Einstein held dual citizenships from the US and Switzerland. Einstein was awarded the 1921 Nobel Prize in Physics ``in recognition of his services to theoretical physics and in particular for his discovery of the law on which photoelectric activity is based".

Albert Einstein worked from 1902 through 1909 in the patent office in Bern where he was appointed technical expert. While in this office he completed an astonishing range of theoretical physics publications and announced his special theory of relativity, which required a fundamental revision in the traditionally held Newtonian views of space and time, and introduced the celebrated equation E = mc2. In 1905, Albert Einstein earned his doctorate at the University of Zurich.

Einstein sought to extend the special theory of relativity to phenomena involving acceleration. The key appeared in 1907 with the principle of equivalence, in which gravitational acceleration was held to be indistinguishable from acceleration caused by mechanical forces. Gravitational mass was therefore identical with inertial mass.

In 1908 Einstein became a lecturer at the University of Bern after submitting his Habilitation thesis. The following year he became professor of physics at the University of Zurich, having resigned his lectureship and his job in the patent office in Bern. In 1912 Einstein took up a chair at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich before leaving Switzerland in 1914 to move to Germany and then to the USA.

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