Saturday, November 08, 2014

radioactivity, accidents and marie curie

scientist sketch
digital sketch: afmaxwell

Yesterday was Marie Curie's birthday. She remains one of the most notable women in science for the work she did on radioactivity with her husband, Pierre alongside. She was the scientist who formulated the theory on which the work was based; he gave up his own research because her ideas intrigued him.
One of this week's writing assignments is a post published for Talk Science To Me yesterday - The Benefit of Accident and Coincidence in Radioactivity.
Coincidently, at about the time that Roentgen was experimenting on his spouse, the 28-year-old Curie was embarking on her doctoral studies in Paris. Inspired by Roentgen and Becquerel, Curie decided to study uranium and its strange electromagnetic rays. Along with her spouse, Pierre, she characterized uranium’s properties and isolated two new elements, radium and polonium, which gave off these mysterious rays. Creating the term “radioactivity” to describe what she was seeing, Curie hypothesized that the rays were due to events happening at the atomic level, challenging the prevailing notion of the indivisible atom.
Read more here ...
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