Heinrich Hertz was a German physicist who made groundbreaking contributions to the field of electromagnetism. His pioneering work in the late 19th century laid the foundation for modern telecommunications and paved the way for numerous technological advancements.

Early Life and Education

Heinrich Rudolf Hertz was born on February 22, 1857, in Hamburg, Germany. He came from a family of academics - his father was a lawyer and his grandfather had been a famous philosopher. Heinrich attended school in Dresden and then went on to study engineering at the Polytechnic School in Munich.

Career and Contributions

Hertz began his academic career as an assistant to Helmholtz in Berlin before taking up a post at the University of Kiel. It was here that he began his groundbreaking investigations into electromagnetic waves, discovering radio waves which we use today. In 1887 he demonstrated mathematically that electromagnetic waves could be projected like light waves.

Legacy and Achievements

In recognition of his countless contributions to science, Heinrich Hertz is often referred to as “the father of wireless communication”. In honor of his achievements, the scientific unit used to measure frequency is named after him – hertz (Hz).

Later years and Death

Despite only living until age 36 due to blood poisoning contracted from an infection while working with electrodes, Hertz left behind a legacy that would change the course of history.


Heinrich Hertz's pioneering theories about electromagnetism have been incredibly important for modern physics. Without his research into radio waves and other electromagnetic phenomena, it's likely we wouldn't have many of our modern technologies like smartphones or GPS systems today. Although he lived a short life, Heinrich Hertz will forever be remembered as one of science's brightest minds whose discoveries paved the way for our current technological era.