The Man Who Discovered Cosmic Black Holes: Karl Schwarzschild
Black Holes: They seem like such an major part of the universe we understand today, yet we’ve only known of their existence for less than a hundred years! It was in the year 1916 that a man named Karl Schwarzschild began to prove the existence of black holes based on the research of scientists like Albert Einstein, among others. But who exactly is Karl Schwarzschild, anyway, and how did he come to discover the existence of black holes?
Karl Schwarzschild was a physicist born in Germany in 1873. He was a very smart child, having a published work about celestial mechanics created when he was only sixteen years old. His interests in both space and mathematics would prove to continue throughout his later years, eventually culminating in the momentous proof of the existence of the black hole.
One of the key points of interest for Karl Schwarzschild’s mathematics career were the publications of none other than Albert Einstein. Schwarzschild took great interest to the works published by Einstein, especially those relating to the Theory of Relativity. Without getting into the specifics of this theory (which is very complex), Schwarzschild used aspects of this theory to recognize and prove the existence of cosmic black holes. This was a scientific breakthrough and shaped the way we understand the universe today.
Unfortunately, Karl Schwarzschild’s life ended soon after his scientific breakthroughs relating to black holes. He died in the same year his major discoveries were being accepted by the scientific community, 1916. The exact date of his death was May 11, 1916.