By I-Juliana Christy
Robert F Christy was once a mythical physicist, one of many key avid gamers in probably the most dramatic occasions of the twentieth century. He used to be a scholar of Oppenheimer, who referred to as him the most effective on the earth. He used to be a vital member of Fermi's group once they first unleashed the unheard-of energies of nuclear energy, growing the world's first nuclear reactor on December 2, 1942. at the ny venture he was once the main physicist within the profitable try out of the world's first atomic bomb, the Christy equipment, at Alamogordo on July sixteen, 1945. shortly he grew to become his abilities to selling the peaceable makes use of of atomic power. He effectively adverse atmospheric checking out of atomic bombs and fought nuclear proliferation, a crusade that at last resulted in the SALT talks with the Soviet Union. His favourite topic was once astrophysics the place he made basic contributions to the knowledge of Cepheids, variable stars which are the most important distance symptoms within the universe.
Robert used to be both attention-grabbing as a guy. In his mid-50's he turned irresistably interested in an astrophysicist, yet they have been a continent and a new release aside. close to his 60's they all started a contented and satisfying lifestyles jointly. He remained energetic either mentally and bodily into his 90's: he used to be nonetheless galloping his horse at age ninety three.
Robert's tale is one among overcoming hindrances, of desire, and of achievement.
Readership: For teachers in addition to most of the people.
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Extra info for Achieving the Rare: Robert F Christy's Journey in Physics and Beyond
Where was he in this environment at Berkeley? RFC: Bob Serber was a post-doc at the time. He was one of a number of postdocs who were working with Robert Oppenheimer for a number of years. Serber was there with his wife Charlotte, a very lively lady, and Serber got a job probably in 1939 or 1940 at the University of Illinois. Later on Leonard Schiff, who wrote a well-known book on quantum mechanics, came and was a post-doc working with Oppenheimer. Later still, Julian Schwinger was there as a post-doc.
For example, one of the experiments was the discovery of a new element, plutonium, 28 Achieving the Rare which came from the decay of uranium-238 plus neutrons making neptunium239, which beta-decayed into plutonium-239, which was fairly stable but which was alpha-radioactive. That was discovered by someone who later became a friend of mine, namely Ed McMillan, who was more senior (about ten years older), and Glenn Seaborg, who both later won Nobel Prizes and who were involved in the atomic energy program.
RFC: I don’t remember. Kusaka probably was a co-author on the theoretical one on the calculation, and I think the “Burst Production by Mesotrons” I did by myself without any co-author [in fact, Kusaka was the second author for both papers]. I also had a publication with Joe Keller, who was the person whom I had assisted earlier. I was a co-author on the publication which was his thesis, on the calculation of the fine structure constant. IJC: Was there any reason at this time that you ended up in theoretical physics rather than experimental physics?
Achieving the Rare: Robert F Christy's Journey in Physics and Beyond by I-Juliana Christy