Birth date: 
Birth place: 
Date of death: 
Place of death: 
16 June 1801 
Elberfeld (now Wuppertal), Duchy of Berg (now Germany) 
22 May 1868 
Bonn, Germany 
Julius Plücker was educated at Heidelberg, Berlin and Paris. He was appointed to Bonn in 1829, and became professor of mathematics at Halle in 1834, then at Bonn in 1836. He made important contributions to analytic geometry and physics. He initiated the investigation of geometrical configurations associated with line complexes. In this way of specifying coordinates a point has a linear equation, namely that of all lines through the point while a line has a pair of numbers namely the x and y coordinates of where it cuts the axes. His work on combinatorics considers Steiner type systems. He also introduced the notion of a ruled surface. In 1847 he turned to physics, accepting the chair of physics at Bonn working on magnetism, electronics and atomic physics. He anticipated Kirchhoff and Bunsen in indicating that spectral lines were characteristic for each chemical substance. In 1865 he returned to mathematics and Klein served as his assistant 18661868.
Source:School of Mathematics and Statistics University of St Andrews, Scotland
