Fifty years have passed since Louis de Broglie created the theory of matter waves and published his first papers on the subject—inaugurating the era of modern quantum mechanics. De Broglie's undertaking was a very bold one. Unlike Planck's work in the older quantum theory, which had its origin in the measurements of black‐body radiation, and unlike the photon hypothesis of Einstein, where the early experiments on the photoelectric effect offered some corroboration, de Broglie's theory lacked the support of any direct experimental evidence. Had it not been for the intervention of such established figures as Langevin and Einstein, who recognized the importance of what he had accomplished, de Broglie's work probably would have had little immediate effect.

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