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William Grylls Adams
Born 18 February 1836 Edit this on Wikidata
"Laneast Edit this on Wikidata
Died 10 April 1915 Edit this on Wikidata (aged 79)
"Broadstone Edit this on Wikidata
Occupation "Physicist, "astronomer, "philosopher Edit this on Wikidata

William Grylls Adams "FRS (18 February 1836 in "Laneast, "Cornwall – 10 April 1915) was professor of Natural Philosophy at "King's College, London.[1]

William Grylls Adams was a younger brother of "John Couch Adams (1819–1892). He graduated from "St. John's College, Cambridge as "11th Wrangler in 1855.[2][3] He undertook a teaching post at "Highgate School in 1864.[4]

In 1839, "Alexandre Edmond Becquerel (1820–1891) had discovered that illumination of one of two metal plates in a dilute acid changed the electromotive force (EMF).[5] In 1876, Adams and Richard Evans Day discovered that illuminating a junction between selenium and platinum has a "photovoltaic effect.[6][7] This first demonstrated that electricity could be produced from light without moving parts and led to the modern solar cell.

From 1878 to 1880 he was President of the Physical Society of London. In June 1872 he was elected a "Fellow of the Royal Society and in 1875 delivered their "Bakerian Lecture.[8] He was president of the "Institute of Electrical Engineers and of the mathematical and physical section of the "British Association.[9]



  1. ^ "Adams, William Grylls". Who's Who. Vol. 59. 1907. p. 17. 
  2. ^ "Adams, William Grylls (ADMS855WG)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge. 
  3. ^ http://plms.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/pdf_extract/s2_14/1/xxxv
  4. ^ Ed. Boreham, J.Y. Highgate School Register 1838-1938 (4th ed.). p. xxvi. 
  5. ^ http://www.nahste.ac.uk/isaar/GB_0237_NAHSTE_P0910.html
  6. ^ http://www.eoearth.org/article/Adams,_William_Grylls
  7. ^ https://books.google.com/books?id=OlA-fN3Bd4QC&pg=PA155
  8. ^ "Library and Archive Catalogue". Royal Society. Retrieved 14 December 2010. 
  9. ^ Wikisource-logo.svg "Gilman, D. C.; Peck, H. T.; Colby, F. M., eds. (1905). "Adams, William Grylls". "New International Encyclopedia (1st ed.). New York: Dodd, Mead. 

William Grylls Adams in libraries ("WorldCat catalog)

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