Jocelyn Bell, astrophysics that should have won the Nobel

Jocelyn Bell was the first scientist who detected a pulsar. Yet another was awarded the Nobel Prize for it. This was what happened.

The awards of some significance that recognize the work of people in specific areas, besides being coveted and usually produce enough respect, also have dark side the injustice. href=”” The Nobel Prize is not an exception in this regard, and controversies have arisen around him in some times. One occurred with the Nobel Physics 1974 controversy in which became embroiled astrophysics Susan Jocelyn Bell Burnell . Here is his story.

The way to discover the first radio signal from a pulsar

Bell was born in Belfast Northern Ireland in 1943 , and there is no doubt that in its future influenced by the fact that his father was the architect who designed the planetary Armagh, the county with the same name as well as the vast library, her father encouraged her to read, dispusiese not a few books on astronomy that she very interested. But, as often happens, the influences of life are varied for our future, and the Bel own later was impressed by the teachings of a professor of Physics at the Mount School in York, England , a women’s college and Quaker where her parents had sent in 1956 A physics professor he pushed her in order to have clear ideas on this science that others may find it abstruse without discipline Mental corresponding after an academic bump. This teacher helped a lot to get a simple conception of physics, how he could learn especially relevant data and develop research from them, without getting bogged down in the rush of information available: basically pushed him in order to have clear ideas in this science that others may find it abstruse without proper mental discipline.

In 1961 wrote a letter to the renowned British astronomer Bernard Lovell , first director of Jodrell Bank Observatory Cheshire, to ask for advice on what to do to be radio astronomer , who replied with the suggestion to explore physics or Electronics. So Bell began studying first at the University of Glasgow, graduating in 1965, and his doctorate later in Cambridge .

It was at the latter university when collaborated Antony Hewish, which was PhD , and five other researchers in building a radio telescope in order to use the interplanetary sparkles to study quasars, astronomical source of electromagnetic energy detected late 50s by American Allan R. Schmidt, although the term is We owe it to fellow Hong-Yee Chiu. Know that by analyzing the interplanetary sparkles, we can differentiate compact sources of remote

Jocelyn Bell at the University of Cambridge in 1968 – Daily Herald

The fact is that Bell he analyzed the records of the radio telescope in the summer of 1967, he discovered a pattern of signals too fast and regular to be of quasar, one per second , whose source called for now LGM1 , ie, Little Green Man 1 u little man Verde 1. then analyzed available data and Hewish ruled that came from the earth itself, human satellites or missing more, alien civilizations. That done, they were able to determine that signals coming from extremely fast rotating massive stars, which called pulsars . In the first one we know as CP 1919, but some think, and rightly so, that should be called Star Bell. The fourth, announced their discovery.

The Nobel laureate who was not

As I said and could not be otherwise, this finding was recognized by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences with the Nobel Prize in Physics 1974 , but not the way it should be: only Antony Hewish received the award . And the controversy that ensued when it was common knowledge that was Bell who had detected the signal of the first pulsar, still fishtailing, ranging from those who accuse Hewish of appropriating the merit of the work of its PhD to those who criticize the Swedish Academy that not rewarded too. The controversy over the exclusion of Nobel goes from those who accuse Hewish of appropriating the merit of the work of its PhD to those who criticize the Swedish Academy not rewarded also

However, the very Jocelyn Bell said the problem is that Nobel only be granted to a maximum of three people at a time while scientists work together, today, much bigger, and to It seems normal to not reward a PhD. But, first, that year he was awarded the Nobel only Hewish and Martin Ryle, who had devised the technique of opening, the interferometric procedure uses several radio telescopes instead of one giant with which Bell found the first pulsar . That is, they awarded two astrophysicists and there was still room for it under the rules of the Nobel, and when he made his discovery, at age 24, did not count with a doctorate does not diminish its merit . Furthermore, to make matters worse, it was the first time the award was granted to astronomers

However, Bell has also ensured that it went better in life without this award. “My marriage I had broken away because my husband would not have been able to accept that his wife cut all this professionally and earn prize money. ” Apart from anything else, if you ask me, I say with all respect that, while highlighting in astrophysics, Bell could have been a great feminist example if you have been granted the Nobel and she wanted to be.

This is a pulsar – HolographicGalaxy

Professionally, of course, has not fared badly: since 1969 has joined teams University of Southampton , where he investigated in gamma ray astronomy , a University College London , which investigated the X-rays in the same field, and Royal Observatory in Edinburgh , which allowed him to scrutinize the EX0SAT satellite galaxies; after he served as professor of physics for a decade in the Bell has received other awards for his work, including the Gold Medal of the CSIC this 2015 Open University and visitor in the Princeton University ; and, from 2001 to 2004, he was Dean of Science at the University of Bath as well as President of the Royal Astronomical Society almost in the same period. It is now a visiting professor at the University of Oxford .

Bell remains Quaker , says, “If your church tells you what you must believe then there are problems [with follow the scientific method]. But for me there is no conflict because the Quaker movement is expected that you develop a theology for yourself. I do not think there is a problem between science and religion, because they are different activities, like love, music, poetry or art. As humans we need all of them, not just science. ” Radically disagree with this opinion for reasons of intellectual rigor. But, hey, the great Michael Faraday href=”” belonged to a very orthodox Christian sect, that of the Sandemanians, and discovered electromagnetic induction, diamagnetism and electrolysis; and Jocelyn Bell discovered pulsars. And the merit of that, which has received other awards, no one can arrebatárelo .


Jocelyn Bell, astrophysics that should have won the Nobel
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Bibliography ► (October 11, 2015). Jocelyn Bell, astrophysics that should have won the Nobel. Bogotá: E-Cultura Group. Recovered from