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The Scientific Contributions of William Weber Coblentz

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A brief review of the early training and graduate work of Coblentz is given, and then a discussion is made of the major researches he carried out. These researches were on the absorption spectra of gases, liquids, and solids, a determination of blackbody constants from experimental measurements, the calibration of radiant energy of a lamp in absolute units, the measurements of the radiant energy from stars and planets; the discovery of infrared photosensitive materials, the determination of the distribution of ozone in the atmosphere, the calibration of sources and detectors in the ultraviolet region, and the measurement of the ultraviolet radiation from the sun It is pointed out that Coblentz was a pioneer in many of these fields and that there was a lapse of many years from the time of his work until other scientists saw the importance and usefulness of it.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: National Bureau of Standards, Washington, D.C.

Publication date: March 1, 1962

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