Marian Smoluchowski – forgotten genius of physics

The Polish Academy of Sciences Scientific Center in Paris is pleased to invite you to an upcoming exhibition that will showcase the life and accomplishments of Marian Smoluchowski – an exceptional Polish physicist from the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries. The exhibition is scheduled to take place in September 2024.

Despite his groundbreaking discoveries, Marian Smoluchowski remains relatively unknown to the general public. Who was he?

Marian Smoluchowski is widely regarded as a pioneer of experimental physics. He conducted research on the movements of particles and their diffusion, which were later utilized by Albert Einstein for his theory on chaotic particle motion. After Smoluchowski’s passing, Einstein wrote a memoir about him.

Smoluchowski is also credited with co-creating the kinetic theory of matter. In 1904, he confirmed the possibility of observing fluctuations in physical quantities caused by the granular structure of matter. Based on this, he independently explained the phenomenon of Brownian motion, which further supported the hypothesis about the atomistic structure of matter. Smoluchowski was among the first to apply probability theory in the study of physical phenomena, which paved the way for the development of a new branch of physics – statistical physics.

At the young age of 28, Smoluchowski became an associate professor of theoretical physics at the University of Lviv, and just three years later, he was appointed a full professor, becoming the youngest professor in the Austro-Hungarian Empire. In 1917, he became the rector of the Jagiellonian University.

In recognition of Smoluchowski’s contributions, the Polish Physical Society established the Marian Smoluchowski Medal.

Further details about the exhibition will be made available shortly.


02 Sep 2024 - 29 Nov 2024


09:00 - 17:00