Leopold Pfaundler

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Leopold Pfaundler von Hadermur (14 February 1839 – 6 May 1920) was an Austrian physicist and chemist born in Innsbruck. He was the father of pediatrician Meinhard von Pfaundler (1872-1947), and the father-in-law of pediatrician Theodor Escherich (1857-1911).

He studied under chemist Heinrich Hlasiwetz (1825-1875) at Innsbruck, with Justus von Liebig (1803-1873) at the University of Munich, and with Henri Victor Regnault (1810-1878) and Charles Adolphe Wurtz (1817-1884) in Paris. In 1861 he received his doctorate, and in 1867 was appointed professor of physics at the University of Innsbruck. In 1891 he succeeded Ludwig Boltzmann (1844-1906) as professor of physics at the University of Graz. In 1887 he became a full member of the Vienna Academy of Sciences.[1][2]

Pfaundler is remembered today for his kinetic-molecular explanation of gas reactions under the condition of equilibrium.[3] He was the inventor of a number of scientific apparatuses — devices he often utilized in classroom demonstrations. These included a temperature regulator (1863), a Stromkalorimeter (1869), a differential air thermometer (1875), a seismograph (1897) and a distance meter (1915), to name a few.[2] He is also credited with creating a device for optical demonstration of Lissajous figures (1873).[4]

In 1863-64 he performed a survey of the Stubaier Alps with Ludwig Barth zu Barthenau (1839-1890), and in 1864 he was the first person to ascend to the summit of the Hofmannspitze (3112m).[5]

Selected written works[edit]

  • Die Physik des täglichen Lebens, gemeinverständlich dargestellt (1906).
  • Die physik des täglichen Lebens mit 467 Abbildungen (1913).
  • Ueber die Wärmekapazität des Wassers und eine Methode den Ort ihres Minimums zu messen (1915).
  • Ueber einen neuen Distanzmesser (1915).
  • Chronik der Familie Pfaundler von 1486 bis 1915 (1915).
  • Die Innsbrucker Studenten-Kompagnie 1859 und 1866 (1917).
  • Das chinesisch-japanische GO-Spiel: eine systematische Darstellung und Anleitung zum Spielen desselben.[6]

He also published Müller-Pouillet's Lehrbuch der Physik und Meteorologie ("Johann Heinrich Jakob MüllerClaude Pouillet's textbook of physics and meteorology"), (9th edition, 1886–98, 3 volumes).[7]

Awards and honors[edit]

Pfaundler’s 1867 publication entitled “Beiträge zur chemischen Statik” [“A Contribution to Chemical Statics”] was a major contribution to the kinetic theory of chemical reactions. This publication was honored by a Citation for Chemical Breakthrough Award from the Division of History of Chemistry of the American Chemical Society presented to the University of Innsbruck in 2016.[8][9][10][11]


  1. ^ Leopold Pfaundler von Hadermur Austria Forum
  2. ^ a b Pfaundler, Leopold (1839-1920), Chemiker und Physiker at Kipnis de.
  3. ^ [1] A treatise on the principles of chemistry Matthew Moncrieff Pattison Muir - 1884
  4. ^ phsik.uibk Pfaundler's apparatus
  5. ^ Stubaier Alpen alpin: Alpenvereinsführer für Hochalpenwanderer und ... by Walter Klier
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-03-03. Retrieved 2011-12-15.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Katalog der Deutschen Nationalbibliothek
  7. ^ [2] Worldcat Identities
  8. ^ "2016 Awardees". American Chemical Society, Division of the History of Chemistry. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign School of Chemical Sciences. 2016. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
  9. ^ "Citation for Chemical Breakthrough Award" (PDF). American Chemical Society, Division of the History of Chemistry. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign School of Chemical Sciences. 2016. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
  10. ^ Jensen, William B.; Kuhlmann, Julia (2012). "LEOPOLD PFAUNDLER AND THE ORIGINS OF THE KINETIC THEORY OF CHEMICAL REACTIONS" (PDF). Bull. Hist. Chem. 37 (1). Retrieved 15 June 2017.
  11. ^ Pfaundler, Leopold (1867). ""Beiträge zur chemischen Statik" ["A Contribution to Chemical Statics"]". Annalen der Physik und Chemie (131): 55–85.