Definitions

Piccard

Piccard

[Fr. pee-kar]
Piccard, Auguste, 1884-1962, Swiss physicist, b. Basel. He became a professor at the Univ. of Brussels in 1922. He and his twin brother Jean Felix (d. 1963) are known for their balloon ascents into the stratosphere; in Aug., 1932, Auguste ascended to 55,500 ft (16,916 m). He was a collaborator with Albert Einstein in developing instruments for measuring radioactivity. From 1946 he focused on the ocean depths, making several notable dives with his son, Jacques Piccard, 1922-2008, off the African and Italian coasts in a bathyscaphe of his own design. In 1960 Jacques Piccard, with U.S. Navy Lieutenant Donald Walsh, descended to 35,800 ft (10,912 m) in the Marianas Trench. Jacques's son Jacques Piccard, 1958-, is also a balloonist; in Mar., 1999, he and Briton Brian Jones became the first to circle the earth nonstop, in the Breitling Orbiter 3. They wrote Around the World in 20 Days (1999). With Jones he wrote Around the World in 20 Days (1999) about the flight.

Auguste Piccard, 1961

(born Jan. 28, 1884, Basel, Switz.—died March 24, 1962, Lausanne) Swiss-born Belgian physicist and balloon and undersea explorer. He studied and taught physics in Zürich and later at the University of Brussels (1922–54). In 1930 he designed a balloon with an airtight, pressurized cabin to ascend into the stratosphere to study cosmic rays. In 1932 he ascended over 55,500 ft (16,650 m). The undersea bathyscaphe he designed with his son, Jacques (b. 1922), descended in 1953 more than 10,000 ft (3,000 m). His grandson Bernard Piccard made the first round-the-world balloon flight in 1999.

Learn more about Piccard, Auguste with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Auguste Piccard, 1961

(born Jan. 28, 1884, Basel, Switz.—died March 24, 1962, Lausanne) Swiss-born Belgian physicist and balloon and undersea explorer. He studied and taught physics in Zürich and later at the University of Brussels (1922–54). In 1930 he designed a balloon with an airtight, pressurized cabin to ascend into the stratosphere to study cosmic rays. In 1932 he ascended over 55,500 ft (16,650 m). The undersea bathyscaphe he designed with his son, Jacques (b. 1922), descended in 1953 more than 10,000 ft (3,000 m). His grandson Bernard Piccard made the first round-the-world balloon flight in 1999.

Learn more about Piccard, Auguste with a free trial on Britannica.com.

The French name Piccard usually refers to a member of the Swiss-American Piccard family:

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