Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Ernst Abbe (1840 – 1905)

Ernst Abbe (1840 – 1905)
Born in Eisenach, he became professor at the University of Jena in 1870 and in 1878 director of the astronomical and meteorological observatories there.

Consumed by the Jena optical instrument – maker Carl Zeiss in the 1860s, Abbe studied the resolution limit and manufacturing process of microscope. He developed instruments for measuring refractive indices of glass and focometer to control the performance of the optical workshop.

Zeiss took Abbe into partnership, and following Zeiss’s death in 1888 Abbe became owner of the company.

He invented the arrangement later known as “Abbe’s homogenous immersion,” and arising out of his work on the microscope, he founded the diffraction theory of optical imaging from which modern optical imaging techniques have developed.
Ernst Abbe (1840 – 1905)
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