List of scientists whose names are used as units


Many scientists have been recognized with the assignment of their names as international units by the International Committee for Weights and Measures or as non-SI units. The International System of Units (abbreviated SI from French: Système international d'unités) is the most widely used system of units of measurement. There are seven base units and 22 derived units[1] (excluding compound units). These units are used both in science and in commerce. Two of the base SI units and 17 of the derived units are named after scientists.[2] 28 non-SI units are named after scientists. By this convention, their names are immortalised. As a rule, the SI units are written in lowercase letters, but symbols of units derived from the name of a person begin with a capital letter.

Scientists and SI units

Base unit[note 1] Derived unit

(colour legend)

Name[3][4] Life Nationality Quantity[5] SI unit Image
André-Marie Ampère[6] 1775–1836 French Electric current[7] ampere (A)
(Base unit)
Ampere Andre 1825.jpg
William Thomson, 1st Baron Kelvin[8] 1824–1907 British (Irish-Scottish) Thermodynamic temperature[9] kelvin (K)
(Base unit)
Lord Kelvin photograph.jpg
Blaise Pascal[10] 1623–1662 French Pressure[11] pascal (Pa) Blaise pascal.jpg
Isaac Newton[12] 1643–1727 British (English) Force[13] newton (N) GodfreyKneller-IsaacNewton-1689.jpg
Anders Celsius[14] 1701–1744 Swedish Temperature[15] degree Celsius (°C)
Headshot of Anders Celsius.jpg
Charles-Augustin de Coulomb[16] 1736–1806 French Electric charge[17] coulomb (C) Charles de Coulomb.png
James Watt[18] 1736–1819 British (Scottish) Power[19] watt (W) Watt James von Breda.jpg
Alessandro Volta[20] 1745–1827 Italian Electric potential[21] volt (V) Volta A.jpg
Georg Simon Ohm[22] 1789–1855 German Electrical resistance[23] ohm (Ω) Ohm3.gif
Michael Faraday[24] 1791–1867 British (English) Capacitance[25] farad (F) Michael Faraday 001.jpg
Joseph Henry[26] 1797–1878 American Inductance[27] henry (H) Joseph Henry (1879).jpg
Wilhelm Eduard Weber[28] 1804–1891 German Magnetic flux[29] weber (Wb) Wilhelm Eduard Weber II.jpg
Ernst Werner von Siemens[30] 1816–1892 German Conductance[31] siemens (S) Ernst Werner von Siemens.jpg
James Prescott Joule[32] 1818–1889 British (English) Energy[33] joule (J) Joule James Jeens engraving.jpg
Antoine Henri Becquerel[34] 1852–1908 French Radioactivity[35] becquerel (Bq) Becquerel Henri photograph.jpg
Nikola Tesla[36] 1856–1943 Serbian[note 2]-American Magnetic flux density[37] tesla (T) Tesla3.jpg
Heinrich Rudolf Hertz[38] 1857–1894 German Frequency[39] hertz (Hz) Heinrich Rudolf Hertz.jpg
Rolf Maximilian Sievert[40] 1896–1966 Swedish Dose equivalent of radiation[citation needed] sievert (Sv) Rolf Sievert 1896-1966.jpg
Louis Harold Gray[41] 1905–1965 British (English) Absorbed dose of radiation[42] gray (Gy)

Scientists and non-SI units

Name of the scientist[43][44] Life Nationality Quantity Unit[note 3] Image
William Gilbert 1544–1603 British (English) Magnetomotive force gilbert (Gi) William Gilbert 45626i.jpg
John Napier 1550–1617 British (Scottish) Magnitude (ln, dimensionless) neper (Np) John Napier.jpg
Galileo Galilei 1564–1642 Italian Acceleration gal (Gal) Justus Sustermans - Portrait of Galileo Galilei, 1636.jpg
Evangelista Torricelli 1608–1647 Italian Pressure torr (Torr) Libr0367.jpg
René Réaumur 1683–1757 French Temperature degree Reaumur (°R) Rene reaumur.jpg
Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit 1686–1736 Polish-Dutch-German Temperature degree Fahrenheit (°F) Fahrenheit small.jpg
Johann Heinrich Lambert 1728–1777 German Luminance lambert (L) JHLambert.jpg
John Dalton 1766–1844 British Mass (atomic) dalton (Da, amu) John Dalton by Charles Turner.jpg
Hans Christian Ørsted 1777–1851 Danish Magnetic field oersted (Oe) Hans Christian Ørsted daguerreotype.jpg
Johann Carl Friedrich Gauss 1777–1855 German Magnetic flux density gauss (G) Carl Friedrich Gauss.jpg
Michael Faraday 1791–1867 British (English) Electric charge faraday (F) Michael Faraday 001.jpg
Jean Léonard Marie Poiseuille 1797–1869 French Dynamic viscosity poise (P) Poiseuille.jpg
Anders Jonas Ångström 1814–1874 Swedish Length angstrom (Å) Anders Jonas Ångström - 001.png
Sir George Stokes, 1st Baronet 1818–1903 British Kinematic viscosity stokes (St) Ggstokes.jpg
William John Macquorn Rankine 1820–1872 British (Scottish) Thermodynamic temperature degree Rankine (°Ra ) Rankine William signature.jpg
James Clerk Maxwell 1831–1879 British (Scottish) Magnetic flux maxwell (Mx) James Clerk Maxwell.png
Samuel Pierpont Langley 1834–1906 American Energy intensity langley (Ly) Samuel Pierpont Langley.jpg
Ernst Mach 1838–1916 Austrian Speed Mach number (M) Ernst Mach 01.jpg
John Strutt, 3rd Baron Rayleigh 1842–1919 British Acoustic impedance rayl John William Strutt.jpg
Wilhelm Röntgen 1845–1923 German Ionizing radiation röntgen (R) Roentgen2.jpg
Alexander Graham Bell 1847–1922 British (Scottish)-American Magnitude (log10, dimensionless) bel (B) Alexander Graham Bell.jpg
Loránd Eötvös 1848–1919 Hungarian Gravitational gradient eotvos (E) Eötvös Loránd (Székely Aladár felvétele, 1912).jpg
Heinrich Kayser 1853–1940 German Wavenumber kayser Heinrich Kayser.jpg
Joseph John Thomson 1856–1940 British Mass-to-charge ratio thomson (Th) J.J Thomson.jpg
Marie Curie

Pierre Curie





Radioactivity Curie (Ci) Marie Curie c1920.jpg Pierre Curie by Dujardin c1906.jpg
Heinrich Mache 1876–1954 Austrian Radioactivity Mache (ME) Mache-Heinrich-(1876-1954)a.jpg
Peter Debye 1884–1966 Dutch Electric dipole moment debye (D) Debije-boerhaave.jpg
Karl Guthe Jansky 1905–1950 American Spectral Irradiance jansky (JY) Karl Jansky.jpg
Wallace Clement Sabine 1868–1919 American Sound absorption sabin Sabine.png

See also


  1. ^ There are 5 base units that are not named after people: kilogram, metre, second, mole and candela.
  2. ^ The village he was born was a part of Austrian Empire, now it is in Croatia.
  3. ^ As a rule, the units are written in lowercase letters. But, symbols of units derived from a personal name always begin with a capital letter.


  1. ^ Essential of the SI
  2. ^ Derived SI units with special names
  3. ^ Asimov's Biographical Encyclopedia
  4. ^ Elektrik Mühendisliği pp. 247–275
  5. ^ Young and Freedman, p. A-1
  6. ^ Marie Ampere
  7. ^ Ampere on Dictionary
  8. ^ Kelvin, Lord William Thomson
  9. ^ Inventors
  10. ^ Blaise Pascal
  11. ^ Pa Pascal pressure unit
  12. ^ Isaac Newton's life
  13. ^ Newton
  14. ^ Anders Celsius (1701–1744)
  15. ^ Celsius Definition
  16. ^ Charles Augustin de Coulomb (French Physicist)
  17. ^ Coulomb
  18. ^ BBC Historic figures
  19. ^ Watt conversion)
  20. ^ Inventor Alessandro Volta Biography
  21. ^ Volt
  22. ^ "Georg Simon Ohm". St. Andrews University. Retrieved 13 April 2021.
  23. ^ Ohm (unit)
  24. ^ Michael Faraday
  25. ^ Farad
  26. ^ Joseph Henry Archived 9 December 2006 at the Wayback Machine
  27. ^ Henry: Definition from Answers
  28. ^ The New International Encyclopaedia: Weber
  29. ^ Weber (unit)
  30. ^ Siemens, Werner von
  31. ^ Siemens (unit)
  32. ^ "Biography:James Prescott Joule". Archived from the original on 21 October 2012. Retrieved 2 May 2011.
  33. ^ What is a Joule ?
  34. ^ Henri Becquerel
  35. ^ Becquerel
  36. ^ Tesla's Biography
  37. ^ Tesla (unit)
  38. ^ Heinrich Hertz
  39. ^ Hertz
  40. ^ Rolf Sievert, the man and the unit
  41. ^ About L.G.Gray
  42. ^ Gray
  43. ^ Isaac Asimov: Asimov's Biographical Encyclopedia of Science and Technology Pan Reference Books, London, 1972, ISBN 0-330-24323-3
  44. ^ Elektrik Mühendisliği, TBMMO Yayın organı, 259–260, Ankara, 1978


  • "Essentials of the SI". Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • Gordon England. "Derived SI units with special names". Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • Asimov, Isaac (1972). Asimov's Biographical Encyclopedia of Science and Technology. London: Pan Books. ISBN 0-330-24323-3.
  • İnan, Kemal (1978). Elektrik Mühendisliği (259-260) : Elektrik. Ankara: TBMMO EMO Yayın organı.
  • Hugh Young, Roger Freedman. University Physics. Addison Wesley. ISBN 0-321-50130-6.
  • Eric W. Weisstein. "Kelvin, Lord William Thomson (1824–1907)". Wolfram Research. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • Alfred Ruppert Hall. "Isaac Newton's Life". Isaac Newton Institute for Mathematical Sciences. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Anders Celsius (1701–1744)". Uppsala University. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Charles Augustin de Coulomb (French physicists)". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 5 May 2011.
  • "Coulomb". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Ohm (unit)". The Free Dictionary by Farlex. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Michael Faraday". Famous Physicists and Astronomers. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Joseph Henry". The national academy of sciences. Archived from the original on 9 December 2006. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Weber, Wilhelm". The New International Encyclopaedia. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Siemens, Werner von". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Siemens (unit)". Medlib. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Biography:James Presacott Joule". Oracle ThinkQuest. Archived from the original on 21 October 2012. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Henri Becquerel". Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Becquerel". Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • Dr.Ljubo Vujović. "Tesla's Biography". Tesla Memorial Society of New York. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Tesla Unit". Tesla Memorial Society of New York. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Heinrich Hertz". Biograhpicon. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Hertz". University of California, Berkeley. Retrieved 4 May 2011.
  • Mariann Eklund. "Rolf Sievert, the man and the unit". Karolinska Institutet. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "About L.G.Gray". L.G.Gray Memorial Trust. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
  • "Decibel". NDT resource center. Archived from the original on 15 February 2014. Retrieved 3 May 2011.

External links

  • Physical dimensions of the units