Johannes Hittorf

The Discovery of the Electron (Johannes Hittorf)

In 1869 Johannes Hittorf showed that when a solid object is placed between the cathode and anode of this apparatus, a shadow is cast on the end of the tube across from the cathode, as shown below. This suggests that some beam or ray is given off by the cathode, and these tubes soon became known as cathode-ray tubes.

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A solid object placed in the path of the cathode rays casts a shadow on the wall of the tube across from the cathode.


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