The Bohr-Einstein Debate

A narration of the "Debate of the Century"

The year is 1905. Newly graduated with a Ph.D. in physics, Albert Einstein publishes the paper Über einen die Erzeugung und Verwandlung des Lichtes betreffenden heuristischen Gesichttspunkt (“On a Heuristic Viewpoint Concerning the Production and Transformation of Light”). In it, he proposes a revision of one of the fundamental laws of physics to account for the behavior of light as both a particle and a wave, work for which he would later be awarded the Nobel Prize (1921). Eight years later in 1913, in the paper On the Constitution of Atoms and Molecules, Part II Systems Containing Only a Single Nucleus, Danish physicist Niels Bohradapts Ernest Rutherford’s 1911 model of the atom to Max Planck’s quantum theory to introduce a new model of the atom — the Bohr model, both earning himself his own Nobel (1922), as well as setting the stage for a coming quantum revolution in physics. Continue reading


Read the full essay in Cantor’s Paradise on Medium