Since ancient times, we have heard the mention of scholars in the fields of art, literature etc. With the passage of time, man changed his imagination and curiosity into reality in other areas as well. In the modern era, science has been considered as the basis of development, so we should keep this in mind and remember those scientists who made such important discoveries.
Many geniuses, innovators, and scientists have walked on this earth. Inventions by them changed the world in a big way. Their contributions to the field of science are immense. Most of these scientists are well-known all over the world. The many years of great hard work that these scientists have put in is simply incredible. Here’s the list of great and popular non-Indian scientists. The development of scientific thought in the modern world can be attributed to these great minds. They brought about an unparalleled change in global scientific thought. Their creativity and mental aptitude essentially shaped the way we live now. Their work is still used by universities and research scholars giving way to modern scientific thinking. The amazing works of these scientists are reflected even today in fields like nuclear science, biotechnology, biological science, digital media, energy, cloud computing, and even Artificial Intelligence. Their thoughts still have the power to almost entirely reshape the way we live. Come, in this list of today, we look at the great scientists around the world whose discoveries brought humanity and science to new peaks –
Note: Indian Scientists are not added to this list. We have made a separate list for them. You can see here: Modern Indian Scientists | Ancient Indian Scientists
Thomas Alva Edison (February 11, 1847 – October 18, 1931) was an American inventor and businessman who has been described as America’s greatest inventor. He developed many devices in fields such as electric power generation, mass communication, sound recording, and motion pictures. These inventions,...Read More
Albert Einstein (14 March 1879 – 18 April 1955) was a German-born theoretical physicist who developed the theory of relativity, one of the two pillars of modern physics (alongside quantum mechanics). His work is also known for its influence on the philosophy of science. He is best known to the general...Read More
Alexander Graham Bell
Alexander Graham Bell ( March 3, 1847 – August 2, 1922) was a Scottish-born inventor, scientist, and engineer who is credited with inventing and patenting the first practical telephone. He also co-founded the American Telephone and Telegraph Company (AT&T) in 1885.Bell’s father, grandfather,...Read More
Stephen William Hawking (8 January 1942 – 14 March 2018) was an English theoretical physicist, cosmologist, and author who was director of research at the Centre for Theoretical Cosmology at the University of Cambridge at the time of his death. He was the Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at the...Read More
Nikola Tesla (10 July 1856 – 7 January 1943) was a Serbian-American inventor, electrical engineer, mechanical engineer, and futurist best known for his contributions to the design of the modern alternating current (AC) electricity supply system.Born and raised in the Austrian Empire, Tesla studied...Read More
Sir Isaac Newton (25 December 1642 – 20 March 1726/27) was an English mathematician, physicist, astronomer, theologian, and author (described in his own day as a “natural philosopher”) who is widely recognised as one of the most influential scientists of all time and as a key figure...Read More
Sir Humphry Davy, 1st Baronet (17 December 1778 – 29 May 1829) was a Cornish chemist and inventor, who is best remembered today for isolating, by using electricity, a series of elements for the first time: potassium and sodium in 1807 and calcium, strontium, barium, magnesium and boron the following...Read More
Louis Pasteur ( December 27, 1822 – September 28, 1895) was a French biologist, microbiologist, and chemist renowned for his discoveries of the principles of vaccination, microbial fermentation, and pasteurization. He is remembered for his remarkable breakthroughs in the causes and prevention of...Read More
Galileo di Vincenzo Bonaiuti de’ Galilei ( 15 February 1564 – 8 January 1642) was an Italian astronomer, physicist and engineer, sometimes described as a polymath, from Pisa. Galileo has been called the “father of observational astronomy”, the “father of modern physics”,...Read More
Archimedes of Syracuse ( c. 287 – c. 212 BC) was a Greek mathematician, physicist, engineer, inventor, and astronomer. Although few details of his life are known, he is regarded as one of the leading scientists in classical antiquity. Considered to be the greatest mathematician of ancient history,...Read More
Nicolaus Copernicus ( 19 February 1473 – 24 May 1543) was a Renaissance-era mathematician, astronomer, and Catholic canon who formulated a model of the universe that placed the Sun rather than Earth at its center. In all likelihood, Copernicus developed his model independently of Aristarchus of Samos, an ancient Greek astronomer who had formulated such a model some eighteen centuries earlier.
Marie Skłodowska Curie, born Maria Salomea Skłodowska (7 November 1867 – 4 July 1934), was a Polish and naturalized-French physicist and chemist who conducted pioneering research on radioactivity.
As the first of the Curie family legacy of five Nobel Prizes, she was the first woman to win...Read More
J. J. Thomson
Sir Joseph John Thomson (18 December 1856 – 30 August 1940) was a British physicist and Nobel Laureate in Physics, credited with the discovery of the electron, the first subatomic particle to be discovered.
In 1897, Thomson showed that cathode rays were composed of previously unknown negatively...Read More
Leonardo da Vinci
Leonardo da Vinci ( 14/15 April 1452 – 2 May 1519) was an Italian polymath of the High Renaissance who is widely considered one of the most diversely talented individuals ever to have lived. While his fame initially rested on his achievements as a painter, he also became known for his notebooks,...Read More
Sir Alexander Fleming (6 August 1881 – 11 March 1955) was a Scottish physician and microbiologist, best known for discovering the enzyme lysozyme and the world’s first broadly effective antibiotic substance which he named penicillin. He discovered lysozyme from his nasal discharge in 1922,...Read More
Lorenzo Romano Amedeo Carlo Avogadro, Count of Quaregna and Cerreto ( 9 August 1776 – 9 July 1856) was an Italian scientist, most noted for his contribution to molecular theory now known as Avogadro’s law, which states that equal volumes of gases under the same conditions of temperature and...Read More
Robert Hooke FRS (28 July [O.S. 18 July] 1635 – 3 March 1703) was an English scientist and architect, a polymath, recently called “England’s Leonardo”, who, using a microscope, was the first to visualize a microorganism. An impoverished scientific inquirer in young adulthood, he...Read More
Carl Edward Sagan (; November 9, 1934 – December 20, 1996) was an American astronomer, planetary scientist, cosmologist, astrophysicist, astrobiologist, author, poet, and science communicator. His best known scientific contribution is research on extraterrestrial life, including experimental demonstration...Read More
John Dalton FRS ( 6 September 1766 – 27 July 1844) was an English chemist, physicist and meteorologist. He is best known for introducing the atomic theory into chemistry, and for his research into colour blindness, sometimes referred to as Daltonism in his honour. Dalton was the first scientist to use the term atom for the smallest particle of matter, which originated from Greek word ‘atomos’ meaning cannot be divided further.
Gregor Johann Mendel ( 20 July 1822 – 6 January 1884) was a scientist, meteorologist, mathematician, biologist, Augustinian friar and abbot of St. Thomas’ Abbey in Brno, Margraviate of Moravia. Mendel was born in a German-speaking family in the Silesian part of the Austrian Empire (today’s...Read More
Edwin Powell Hubble (November 20, 1889 – September 28, 1953) was an American astronomer. He played a crucial role in establishing the fields of extragalactic astronomy and observational cosmology.Hubble proved that many objects previously thought to be clouds of dust and gas and classified as “nebulae”...Read More
James Clerk Maxwell
James Clerk Maxwell (13 June 1831 – 5 November 1879) was a Scottish scientist in the field of mathematical physics. His most notable achievement was to formulate the classical theory of electromagnetic radiation, bringing together for the first time electricity, magnetism, and light as different...Read More
Benjamin Franklin (January 17, 1706 [O.S. January 6, 1705] – April 17, 1790) was a British American polymath and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. Franklin was a leading writer, printer, political philosopher, politician, Freemason, postmaster, scientist, inventor, humorist, civic...Read More
William Harvey (1 April 1578 – 3 June 1657) was an English physician who made influential contributions in anatomy and physiology. He was the first known physician to describe completely, and in detail, the systemic circulation and properties of blood being pumped to the brain and the rest of the body by the heart, though earlier writers, such as Realdo Colombo, Michael Servetus, and Jacques Dubois, had provided precursors of the theory.
Charles H. Townes
Charles Hard Townes (July 28, 1915 – January 27, 2015) was an American physicist. Townes worked on the theory and application of the maser, for which he obtained the fundamental patent, and other work in quantum electronics associated with both maser and laser devices. He shared the 1964 Nobel Prize...Read More
Richard Phillips Feynman ( May 11, 1918 – February 15, 1988) was an American theoretical physicist, known for his work in the path integral formulation of quantum mechanics, the theory of quantum electrodynamics, the physics of the superfluidity of supercooled liquid helium, as well as his work...Read More
Niels Henrik David Bohr ( 7 October 1885 – 18 November 1962) was a Danish physicist who made foundational contributions to understanding atomic structure and quantum theory, for which he received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1922. Bohr was also a philosopher and a promoter of scientific research.
John Bardeen (; May 23, 1908 – January 30, 1991) was an American physicist. He is the only person to be awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics twice: first in 1956 with William Shockley and Walter Brattain for the invention of the transistor; and again in 1972 with Leon N Cooper and John Robert Schrieffer...Read More
Johannes Kepler ( 27 December 1571 – 15 November 1630) was a German astronomer, mathematician, and astrologer. He is a key figure in the 17th-century scientific revolution, best known for his laws of planetary motion, and his books Astronomia nova, Harmonices Mundi, and Epitome Astronomiae Copernicanae....Read More
George Washington Carver
George Washington Carver (1860s – January 5, 1943) was an American agricultural scientist and inventor who promoted alternative crops to cotton and methods to prevent soil depletion. He was the most prominent black scientist of the early 20th century.
While a professor at Tuskegee Institute,...Read More
Michael Faraday ( 22 September 1791 – 25 August 1867) was an English scientist who contributed to the study of electromagnetism and electrochemistry. His main discoveries include the principles underlying electromagnetic induction, diamagnetism and electrolysis.
Although Faraday received little...Read More
E. O. Wilson
Edward Osborne Wilson (born June 10, 1929), usually cited as E. O. Wilson, is an American biologist, naturalist, and writer. His biological specialty is myrmecology, the study of ants, on which he has been called the world’s leading expert.Wilson has been called “the father of sociobiology”...Read More
Ibn Sina, also known as Abu Ali Sina, Pur Sina, and often known in the West as Avicenna (c. 980 – June 1037), was a Persian polymath who is regarded as one of the most significant physicians, astronomers, thinkers and writers of the Islamic Golden Age, and the father of early modern medicine....Read More
Carl Linnaeus (; 23 May 1707 – 10 January 1778), also known after his ennoblement as Carl von Linné, was a Swedish botanist, zoologist, and physician who formalised binomial nomenclature, the modern system of naming organisms. He is known as the “father of modern taxonomy”. Many of...Read More
Dmitri Ivanovich Mendeleev [(often romanized as Mendeleyev or Mendeleef) (8 February 1834 – 2 February 1907)] was a Russian chemist and inventor. He is best remembered for formulating the Periodic Law and creating a farsighted version of the periodic table of elements. He used the Periodic Law not...Read More
Enrico Fermi ( 29 September 1901 – 28 November 1954) was an Italian (later naturalized American) physicist and the creator of the world’s first nuclear reactor, the Chicago Pile-1. He has been called the “architect of the nuclear age” and the “architect of the atomic bomb”....Read More
Ernest Rutherford, 1st Baron Rutherford of Nelson, (30 August 1871 – 19 October 1937) was a New Zealand physicist who came to be known as the father of nuclear physics. Encyclopædia Britannica considers him to be the greatest experimentalist since Michael Faraday (1791–1867). Like all New Zealanders...Read More
Barbara McClintock (June 16, 1902 – September 2, 1992) was an American scientist and cytogeneticist who was awarded the 1983 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. McClintock received her PhD in botany from Cornell University in 1927. There she started her career as the leader in the development...Read More
Otto Hahn (pronounced [ˈɔto ˈhaːn] (listen); 8 March 1879 – 28 July 1968) was a German chemist, and a pioneer in the fields of radioactivity and radiochemistry. Hahn is referred to as the father of nuclear chemistry. Hahn and Lise Meitner discovered radioactive isotopes of radium, thorium, protactinium...Read More
Paul Adrien Maurice Dirac (; 8 August 1902 – 20 October 1984) was an English theoretical physicist who is regarded as one of the most significant physicists of the 20th century.Dirac made fundamental contributions to the early development of both quantum mechanics and quantum electrodynamics. Among...Read More
Heinrich Hermann Robert Koch (English: ; German: [ˈʁoː.bɛʁt kɔx] (listen); 11 December 1843 – 27 May 1910) was a German physician and microbiologist. As one of the main founders of modern bacteriology, he identified the specific causative agents of tuberculosis, cholera, and anthrax and also...Read More
Antoine Henri Becquerel
Antoine Henri Becquerel (15 December 1852 – 25 August 1908) was a French engineer, physicist, Nobel laureate, and the first person to discover evidence of radioactivity. For work in this field he, along with Marie Skłodowska-Curie (Marie Curie) and Pierre Curie, received the 1903 Nobel Prize in Physics. The SI unit for radioactivity, the becquerel (Bq), is named after him.
Charles Robert Darwin ( 12 February 1809 – 19 April 1882) was an English naturalist, geologist and biologist, best known for his contributions to the science of evolution. His proposition that all species of life have descended over time from common ancestors is now widely accepted, and considered...Read More
Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz
Gottfried Wilhelm (von) Leibniz ( 1 July 1646 [O.S. 21 June] – 14 November 1716) was a prominent German polymath and one of the most important logicians, mathematicians and natural philosophers of the Enlightenment. As a representative of the seventeenth-century tradition of rationalism, Leibniz...Read More
Antonie van Leeuwenhoek
Antonie Philips van Leeuwenhoek ( 24 October 1632 – 26 August 1723) was a Dutch businessman and scientist in the Golden Age of Dutch science and technology. A largely self-taught man in science, he is commonly known as “the Father of Microbiology”, and one of the first microscopists...Read More
Lise Meitner ( 7 November 1878 – 27 October 1968) was an Austrian-Swedish physicist who contributed to the discoveries of the element protactinium and nuclear fission. While working at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute on radioactivity, she discovered the radioactive isotope protactinium-231 in 1917....Read More
Maurice Hugh Frederick Wilkins CBE FRS (15 December 1916 – 5 October 2004) was a New Zealand-born British biophysicist and Nobel laureate whose research spanned multiple areas of physics and biophysics, contributing to the scientific understanding of phosphorescence, isotope separation, optical microscopy and X-ray diffraction, and to the development of radar. He is best known for his work at King’s College London on the structure of DNA.
Alessandro Giuseppe Antonio Anastasio Volta (18 February 1745 – 5 March 1827) was an Italian physicist, chemist, and pioneer of electricity and power who is credited as the inventor of the electric battery and the discoverer of methane. He invented the Voltaic pile in 1799, and reported the results...Read More
John Craig Venter (born October 14, 1946) is an American biotechnologist and businessman. He is known for leading the first draft sequence of the human genome and assembled the first team to transfect a cell with a synthetic chromosome. Venter founded Celera Genomics, The Institute for Genomic Research...Read More
Stephen Jay Gould
Stephen Jay Gould ( September 10, 1941 – May 20, 2002) was an American paleontologist, evolutionary biologist, and historian of science. He was one of the most influential and widely read authors of popular science of his generation. Gould spent most of his career teaching at Harvard University...Read More
Rachel Louise Carson (May 27, 1907 – April 14, 1964) was an American marine biologist, author, and conservationist whose book Silent Spring and other writings are credited with advancing the global environmental movement.
Carson began her career as an aquatic biologist in the U.S. Bureau of...Read More
Linus Carl Pauling ( February 28, 1901 – August 19, 1994) was an American chemist, biochemist, chemical engineer, peace activist, author, and educator. He published more than 1,200 papers and books, of which about 850 dealt with scientific topics. New Scientist called him one of the 20 greatest...Read More
Max Karl Ernst Ludwig Planck, ForMemRS ( 23 April 1858 – 4 October 1947) was a German theoretical physicist whose discovery of energy quanta won him the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1918.Planck made many contributions to theoretical physics, but his fame as a physicist rests primarily on his role as...Read More
Blaise Pascal ( 19 June 1623 – 19 August 1662) was a French mathematician, physicist, inventor, philosopher, writer and Catholic theologian.
He was a child prodigy who was educated by his father, a tax collector in Rouen. Pascal’s earliest mathematical work was on the conics sections;...Read More
Sir Timothy John Berners-Lee (born 8 June 1955), also known as TimBL, is an English computer scientist best known as the inventor of the World Wide Web. He is a Professorial Fellow of Computer Science at the University of Oxford and a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Berners-Lee...Read More
James Dewey Watson KBE (born April 6, 1928) is an American molecular biologist, geneticist and zoologist. In 1953, he co-authored with Francis Crick the academic paper proposing the double helix structure of the DNA molecule. Watson, Crick and Maurice Wilkins were awarded the 1962 Nobel Prize in Physiology...Read More
John von Neumann
John von Neumann ( December 28, 1903 – February 8, 1957) was a Hungarian-American mathematician, physicist, computer scientist, engineer and polymath. Von Neumann was generally regarded as the foremost mathematician of his time and said to be “the last representative of the great mathematicians”. He integrated pure and applied sciences.
Werner Karl Heisenberg ( 5 December 1901 – 1 February 1976) was a German theoretical physicist and one of the key pioneers of quantum mechanics. He published his work in 1925 in a breakthrough paper. In the subsequent series of papers with Max Born and Pascual Jordan, during the same year, this...Read More
Lord (William Thomson) Kelvin
William Thomson, 1st Baron Kelvin, (26 June 1824 – 17 December 1907) was a British mathematician, mathematical physicist and engineer born in Belfast. Professor of Natural Philosophy at the University of Glasgow for 53 years, he did important work in the mathematical analysis of electricity and...Read More