- Year of Discovery: 260 B.C.
- What Is It?The two fundamental principles underlying all physics and engineering.
- Who Discovered It? Archimedes
- Why Is This One of the Science Greatest?
The concepts of buoyancy (water pushes up on an object with a force equal to the weight of water that the object displaces) and of levers (a force pushing down on one side of a lever creates a lifting force on the other side that is proportional to the lengths of the two sides of the lever) lie at the foundation of all quantitative science and engineering.
They represent humanity’s earliest breakthroughs in understanding the relationships in the physical world around us and in devising mathematical ways to de scribe the physical phenomena of the world. Countless engineering and scientific advances have depended on those two discoveries.
- Fun Facts: When Archimedes discovered the concept of buoyancy, he leapt from the bath and shouted the word he made famous: “Eureka!” which means “I found it!” That word became the motto of the state of California after the first gold rush miners shouted that they had found gold.
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