Friday, December 5, 2014

Sir James Chadwick

James Chadwick was born in Bollington near Manchester, UK in 1891. He was awarded Nobel Prize for physics in 1935 for the discovery of neutron.

When his father left for Manchester to establish a laundry business, young Chadwick stayed on with his grandmother and received his primary education at the local school.

After attending Manchester High School, he entered Manchester University.

He later graduated with first first class degree in physics in 1911. Upon graduating Chadwick was accepted by Rutherford as a research student for the MSc degree at Manchester. He worked in the Physical Laboratory at Manchester University on various problems of radioactivity under Rutherford. He obtained is master’s degree in 1913.

In the early 1900 scientists were aware that atoms contain electrically charged particles called electrons and protons. Scientists also believed that these must be uncharged particles in an atom.

In 1932, Chadwick showed that the radiation from the element beryllium, caused by bombardments of alpha particles is actually a stream of electricity neutron particles. He called these particles ‘neutron’.

Chadwick also explained the existence of isotope. An isotope of an element has the same number of protons but different number of neutrons and has therefore a different atomic weight.
Sir James Chadwick

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