August Föppl

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August Föppl
August Föppl
Born(1854-01-25)25 January 1854
Died12 October 1924(1924-10-12) (aged 70)
Scientific career
Fieldsphysics, engineering, mathematics
ThesisTheorie des Fachwerks (1880)
Theorie der Gewölbe

both monographs combined into 1886 dissertation

Mathematische Theorie der Baukonstruktionen[1]
Doctoral advisorGustav Heinrich Wiedemann
Doctoral studentsHermann Föttinger
Ludwig Prandtl

August Otto Föppl (25 January 1854 – 12 August 1924)[2] was a professor of Technical Mechanics and Graphical Statics at the Technical University of Munich, Germany. He is credited with introducing the Föppl–Klammer theory and the Föppl–von Kármán equations (large deflection of elastic plates).


His doctoral advisor was Gustav Heinrich Wiedemann and one of Föppl's first doctoral students was Ludwig Prandtl, his future son-in-law. He had two sons Ludwig Föppl and Otto Föppl. Ludwig Föppl who was a mechanical engineer and Professor of Technical Mechanics at the Technical University of Munich. Otto Föppl who was an engineer and Professor of Applied Mechanics at the Technical University of Braunschweig for 30 years.[3]


In 1894, Föppl wrote a widely read introductory book on Maxwell's theory of electricity, titled Einführung in die Maxwellsche Theorie der Elektrizität.[4] This 1894 book pioneered the use of Maxwell's theory in Germany and made Föppl famous as a scientist.[5] Gerald Holton argues, that some arguments of Föppl concerning electromagnetic induction, had some influence on Albert Einstein's first paper on special relativity.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kurrer, Karl-Eugen (9 January 2012). The History of the Theory of Structures: From Arch Analysis to Computational Mechanics. John Wiley & Sons. p. 1997. ISBN 978-3-433-60134-1.
  2. ^ Bromberg, Joan (1970–1980). "Föppl, August". Dictionary of Scientific Biography. Vol. 5. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons. pp. 63–64. ISBN 978-0-684-10114-9.
  3. ^ Weierud, Frode; Zabell, Sandy (6 June 2019). "German mathematicians and cryptology in WWII". Cryptologia. Note 69: Taylor & Francis. 44 (2): 51. doi:10.1080/01611194.2019.1600076. ISSN 1558-1586. S2CID 198336556.{{cite journal}}: CS1 maint: location (link)
  4. ^ Föppl, August (1894). Einführung in die Maxwellsche Theorie der Elektrizität. Leipzig: B. G. Teubner. (This was the first German-language textbook on Maxwell's theory of electrodynamics and one of the books that influenced Einstein.)
  5. ^ Timoshenko, Stephen (1 January 1983). History of Strength of Materials: With a Brief Account of the History of Theory of Elasticity and Theory of Structures. Courier Corporation. p. 301. ISBN 978-0-486-61187-7.
  6. ^ Holton, Gerald (1988) [1973], Thematic Origins of Scientific Thought: Kepler to Einstein (revised ed.), Harvard University Press, ISBN 978-0-674-87748-1

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