Leipzig: Johann Ambrosius Barth, 1885. 1st Edition. FIRST EDITION, FIRST PRINTING OF THE SEMINAL 1885 DISCOVERY OF THE BALMER FORMULA: A MATHEMATICAL RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE FREQUENCIES OF ATOMIC SPECTRAL LINES. “Balmer had found a simple but very accurate formula… to compute the frequencies (and wavelengths) of the light for the spectral lines emitted by atomic hydrogen” (Brandt, Harvest of a Century, 93). "As soon as I saw Balmer's formula, the whole thing was immediately clear to me" Bohr told Leon Rosenfeld in an interview. (Heilbron, Historical studies in the theory of atomic structure, p. 265).
In atomic physics, the spectral line emissions of the hydrogen atom are known as the Balmer series or lines. The series is calculated using the Balmer formula, the empirical equation discovered by Balmer and first stated in this paper. Balmer's discovery was very influential in Bohr's famous and groundbreaking discovery and description of his model of atomic structure published in 1913.
In the late 1880s, Johann Balmer noticed that every line in the hydrogen spectrum in the visible light region was related to a single number (364.56 nanometers), and from this concocted a formula that correctly predicted other spectral lines in the visible and infrared spectrum (the ‘Balmer series’). "What Balmer did is slightly incredible. Having at his disposal four frequencies measured by Åndgtröm, he fitted them with a mathematical expression that predicts an infinity of lines - and his formula is in fact correct! Balmer's formula has stood the test of time as more hydrogen lines kept being discovered. Soon his results became widely known; they were quoted in the 1912 edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica. For nearly thirty years no one knew, however, what the formula was trying to say - then Bohr came along." (Pais. Niels Bohr's Times, pp. 142-3).
ALSO INCLUDED: E. Mach and Doubrava; Boltzman, Hittorf: Meyer; Kirchhoff; Lorenz and more. Item #1135
CONDITION & DETAILS: Leipzig: Johann Ambrosius Barth. Band XXV. [viii], 680, , 2. Two small stamps on title page; one on half title. 5 very clean foldout plates. 8vo. Black cloth over marbled paper boards; minor rubbing at the tips. Edges marbled. Spine label hand lettered in an early script. Bright and exceptionally clean throughout. Near fine.