Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Yukawa Hideki (1907-1981)

Yukawa Hideki (1907-1981)
Yukawa Hideki, Japanese physicist, who was awarded the 1949 Nobel Prize for Physics for his prediction in 1935 of the existence of the pi-meson (pion).

The son of geologist, Yukawa was educated at Kyoto University and Osaka University, where in 1938 he was awarded his doctorate.

He taught at both Osaka and Kyoto form 1932 to 1938, when he was appointed to the chair of physics at Kyoto.

In 1930s, Yukawa sought to elucidate the nature of the strong force that holds together the protons and neutrons on the atomic nucleus.

Just as the electromagnetic, interaction can be visualized as an exchange of photons.

Yukawa suggested that the strong interaction within the nucleus could be visualized as an exchange as a particle as yet unidentified.

Yukawa calculated that such a particle would have a mass some two hundred times greater than that of the electron.

A particle fitting this description was detected in 1937; it turned out, however, to be what is now called the muon.

Yukawa’s prediction made in 1935, had to wait a further ten year before C. F Powell discovered pion in debris caused by cosmic rays.
Yukawa Hideki (1907-1981)

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