Sunday, August 14, 2011

Luis Alvarez (1911-1988)

Luis Alvarez was outstanding as scientist and engineer. Luis Alvarez is most famous for his Nobel Prize winning effort to discover and study over 70 new elementary particles, many of which exist for less than 1/1,000,000 of a second.

He was born in San Francisco in June 13 1911. Luis began his studies at the University of Chicago in 1928 then moved to California after graduation to accept a research position at the University of California, Berkeley. He graduated with PhD in 1936 also from University of Chicago.

Beginning in 1936, his entire career was spent at the University of California, Berkeley, as professor of physics from 1945 to 1978, and professor emeritus from 1978.

He was on leave at the Radiation Laboratory of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology from 1940 to 1943, at the Metallurgical Laboratory of the University of Chicago in 1943-1944, and at the Los Alamos Laboratory of the Manhattan District from 1944 to 1945.

As a physicist, he discovered more than seventy new atomic particles, designed detonators for the atomic bombs dropped on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and was responsible for developing three types of radar.

Alvarez discovered new radioisotope of hydrogen and helium that later became important on low temperature research. He also developed a new method for producing beams of ultra –slow neutrons.

Alvarez had designed and built the first Berkeley 40 foot long linear proton accelerator, which was completed in 1947.

He was awarded the Albert Einstein Medal in 1961 and Nobel Prize in Physics in 1968.
Luis Alvarez (1911-1988)

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