Karl Ferdinand Braun

About Karl Ferdinand Braun

Who is it?: German Physicist & Inventor
Birth Day: June 06, 1850
Birth Place: Fulda, Electorate of Hessen, Germany, German
Alma mater: University of Marburg, University of Berlin
Known for: Cathode ray tube, Cat's whisker diode
Awards: Nobel Prize in Physics (1909)
Fields: Physics
Institutions: University of Karlsruhe, University of Marburg, University of Strassburg, University of Tübingen, University of Würzburg
Doctoral advisor: A. Kundt, G. H. Quincke
Doctoral students: L. I. Mandelshtam, A. Schweizer

Karl Ferdinand Braun

Karl Ferdinand Braun was born on June 06, 1850 in Fulda, Electorate of Hessen, Germany, German, is German Physicist & Inventor. Karl Ferdinand Braun was a German physicist and inventor who received the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1909. He shared the prize with another inventor and scientist Guglielmo Marconi. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for his work in the development of the technologies used in television and radio. He became interested in experimenting with wireless telegraphy at an early age. The distance that could be covered by the wireless technology developed by Marconi was about 15 kilometers only. The antenna was connected directly to the power circuit of the transmitter. Braun developed an antenna that could increase the distance by many more kilometers over which wireless transmissions could be made. He is also famous for the creation of the Cathode Ray Tube or CRT used in the design of TV screens and computer monitors later. He designed ways to control the cathode rays by changing the voltage to obtain a definite pattern on the fluorescent screen which had not been possible earlier. The oscilloscope was also his invention which is used in electrical and electronic laboratories as an instrument for measuring different electrical parameters. He also invented the first ‘cat’s whisker diode’ which led to the invention of crystal receivers for radios.
Karl Ferdinand Braun is a member of Scientists

Does Karl Ferdinand Braun Dead or Alive?

As per our current Database, Karl Ferdinand Braun has been died on 20 April 1918(1918-04-20) (aged 67)\nBrooklyn, New York, U.S..

🎂 Karl Ferdinand Braun - Age, Bio, Faces and Birthday

When Karl Ferdinand Braun die, Karl Ferdinand Braun was 67 years old.

Popular As Karl Ferdinand Braun
Occupation Scientists
Age 67 years old
Zodiac Sign Cancer
Born June 06, 1850 (Fulda, Electorate of Hessen, Germany, German)
Birthday June 06
Town/City Fulda, Electorate of Hessen, Germany, German
Nationality German

🌙 Zodiac

Karl Ferdinand Braun’s zodiac sign is Cancer. According to astrologers, the sign of Cancer belongs to the element of Water, just like Scorpio and Pisces. Guided by emotion and their heart, they could have a hard time blending into the world around them. Being ruled by the Moon, phases of the lunar cycle deepen their internal mysteries and create fleeting emotional patterns that are beyond their control. As children, they don't have enough coping and defensive mechanisms for the outer world, and have to be approached with care and understanding, for that is what they give in return.

🌙 Chinese Zodiac Signs

Karl Ferdinand Braun was born in the Year of the Dog. Those born under the Chinese Zodiac sign of the Dog are loyal, faithful, honest, distrustful, often guilty of telling white lies, temperamental, prone to mood swings, dogmatic, and sensitive. Dogs excel in business but have trouble finding mates. Compatible with Tiger or Horse.

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Braun was born in Fulda, Germany, and educated at the University of Marburg and received a Ph.D. from the University of Berlin in 1872. In 1874 he discovered that a point-contact semiconductor rectifies alternating current. He became Director of the Physical Institute and professor of physics at the University of Strassburg in 1895.


During the development of radio, he also worked on wireless telegraphy. In 1897 Braun joined the line of wireless pioneers. His major contributions were the introduction of a closed tuned circuit in the generating part of the transmitter, and its separation from the radiating part (the antenna) by means of inductive coupling, and later on the usage of crystals for receiving purposes. Wireless telegraphy claimed Dr. Braun's full attention in 1898, and for many years after that he applied himself almost exclusively to the task of solving its problems. Dr. Braun had written extensively on wireless subjects and was well known through his many contributions to the Electrician and other scientific journals. In 1899, he would apply for the patents, Electro telegraphy by means of condensers and induction coils and Wireless electro transmission of signals over surfaces.


Around 1898, he invented a crystal diode rectifier or cat's whisker diode. Pioneers working on wireless devices eventually came to a limit of distance they could cover. Connecting the antenna directly to the spark gap produced only a heavily damped pulse train. There were only a few cycles before oscillations ceased. Braun's circuit afforded a much longer sustained oscillation because the Energy encountered less losses swinging between coil and Leyden Jars. And by means of inductive antenna coupling the radiator was better matched to the generator. The resultant stronger and less bandwidth consuming signals bridged a much longer distance.


Braun's British patent on tuning was used by Marconi in many of his tuning patents. Guglielmo Marconi used Braun's patents (among others). Marconi would later admit to Braun himself that he had "borrowed" portions of Braun's work. In 1909 Braun shared the Nobel Prize for physics with Marconi for "contributions to the development of wireless telegraphy." The prize awarded to Braun in 1909 depicts this design. Braun experimented at first at the University of Strasbourg. Not before long he bridged a distance of 42 km to the city of Mutzig. In spring 1899 Braun, accompanied by his colleagues Cantor and Zenneck, went to Cuxhaven to continue their experiments at the North Sea. On 24 September 1900 radio telegraphy signals were exchanged regularly with the island of Heligoland over a distance of 62 km. Light vessels in the river Elbe and a coast station at Cuxhaven commenced a regular radio telegraph Service.


Braun invented the phased array antenna in 1905. He described in his Nobel Prize lecture how he carefully arranged three antennas to transmit a directional signal. This invention led to the development of radar, smart antennas, and MIMO.


Braun went to the United States at the beginning of World War I (before the U.S. had entered the war) to help defend the German wireless station at Sayville, New York, against attacks by the British-controlled Marconi Corporation. After the US entered the war, Braun was detained, but could move freely within Brooklyn, New York. Braun died in his house in Brooklyn, before the war ended in 1918.


In 1987 the Society for Information Display created the Karl Ferdinand Braun Prize, awarded for an outstanding technical achievement in display Technology.

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