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    Auguste Piccard

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    January 28, 1884 – March 24, 1962

    Auguste Piccard was much more than a balloonist.

    (Yes, we realize, this is the second balloonist we're profiling in a matter of days. Let it be.)

    Piccard was a physics professor whose work on cosmic radiation supported Einstein. He was an inventor who created a gondola from pressurized aluminum. Aboard that gondola, Piccard was the first to balloon into the stratosphere. He also invented the bathyscaphe, a free-diving, man-holding device. (Jacques Cousteau was a fan.) Piccard's son was the first to descend into the Mariana Trench, doing so inside his father's invention.

    Piccard was also the model for Professor Calculus (Tournesol in the original), the absent-minded friend and mentor of Tintin in the famed comic series.

    Was he Jewish? It seems that Piccard was born a Christian, but did have Jewish ancestry. As for Professor Calculus? We'll let it be.

    Verdict: Barely a Jew.

    August 1, 2014

    See Also

    Marcel Dassault

    Albert Einstein

    David Levin

    Larry Newman

    David Schwarz
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