Person: Cauer, Wilhelm
Wilhelm Cauer was a German mathematician and physicist who is best known for his work on the analysis and synthesis of electrical filters.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- It was at the start of his studies at the Mommsen Gymnasium in Berlin that Cauer became fascinated by mathematics and decided that he wanted to make his career in that topic.
- His mathematics teacher at the Gymnasium was H Beck who was convinced that Cauer should become a university professor.
- This was close to the end of the war so Cauer only served for a few months before being able to begin his studies at the Berlin-Charlottenburg Technische Hochschule at Easter 1918.
- Beck had progressed from being a Gymnasium teacher to becoming professor of mathematics at Bonn University and, in 1921, Cauer went to Bonn to continue his studies of mathematics and theoretical physics at the university there.
- However, his relationship with von Laue seems to have broken down and Cauer moved to the Berlin-Charlottenburg Technische Hochschule where he was employed as an assistant to Reissner and began to investigate problems in the area of electrical engineering.
- many "ingredients" of a systematic synthesis theory were in the air when Cauer started his scientific career.
- Cauer immediately recognised the potentialities of Foster's ideas and started a private correspondence with Foster.
- Cauer left the Mix & Genest Company in November 1925 and continued to work at the Berlin-Charlottenburg Technische Hochschule for his doctorate.
- Cauer had prepared his habilitation thesis and was ready to submit it by the beginning of 1928.
- However, there were difficulties regarding him submitting it to the Berlin-Charlottenburg Technische Hochschule so Courant suggested that Cauer transfer to Göttingen.
- In February 1930 Cauer was awarded a scholarship by the Rockefeller Foundation to allow him to visit the United States.
- Cauer also suffered from the problem that his work was not appreciated, really being too innovative to make an immediate impact.
- Cauer published the papers Das Poissonsche Integral und seine Anwendungen auf die Theorie der linearen Wechselstrom-schaltungen (Netzwerke) Ⓣ(Poisson's integral and its applications to the theory of linear AC circuits (networks)) and Bemerkung über eine Extremalaufgabe von E Zolotareff Ⓣ(Note on an extremal problem of Zolotareff) in 1940.
- In 1941 Cauer published the first volume of his classic text Theorie der linearen Wechselstromschaltungen Ⓣ(Theory of linear AC circuits).
- The material included contains a considerable amount of Cauer's own researches as well as the work of other European workers which is not generally well-known in this country.
- A second volume of the work was written by Cauer but was destroyed in 1943 in a bombing raid.
- Two days before the American army captured Witzenhausen, Cauer left the town and returned to Berlin.
- It is to Cauer's merit that he turned network and system synthesis into a truly systematic business.
- In contrast to the purely utilitarian or engineering approach, Cauer emphasised the scientific aspects and provided the first precise statement of the network synthesis problem, one that has become a valid paradigm for all synthesis problems.
Born 24 June 1900, Berlin, Germany. Died 22 April 1945, Berlin, Germany.
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Thank you to the contributors under CC BY-SA 4.0!
Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive