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Portrait of Max von Laue (1879-1960), German physicist and Nobel Laureate. After his doctorate in 1903, Laue joined the University of Munich. It was there that he studied X-rays, building on the work of Roentgen and Barkla. It was thought that X-rays were electromagnetic waves of very short wavelength. To prove this, it was necessary to diffract X-rays with a very fine grating. Laue first thought of using the lattice structure of crystals as a grating, and in 1912 conducted a successful experiment. He developed his ideas, as did the Braggs in Britain, and in 1914 was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics. In his later years he became the director of the Max Planck Institute.
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