Imagining The Elephant: A Biography Of Allan Macleod Cormack

World Scientific
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Imagining the Elephant is a biography of Allan MacLeod Cormack, a physicist who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1979 for his pioneering contributions to the development of the computer-assisted tomography (CAT) scanner, an honor he shared with Godfrey Hounsfield. A modest genius who was also a dedicated family man, the book is a celebration of Cormack's life and work. It begins with his ancestral roots in the far north of Scotland, and then chronicles his birth and early years in South Africa, his education at the University of Cape Town (UCT) and Cambridge University, and his subsequent academic appointments at UCT and Tufts University in Boston, USA. It details his discovery of the problem at Cape Town in 1956, traces his scientific footsteps all the way to Stockholm in December 1979, and then extends the odyssey to his pursuits beyond the Nobel Prize./a
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Publisher
World Scientific
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Published on
Jun 2, 2008
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Pages
324
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ISBN
9781908978981
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Language
English
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Genres
Science / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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A unique individual with a fascinating life story, Ivar Giaever is a scientist who won the Nobel Prize in Experimental Physics in 1973. In his own words, Giaever relates an absorbing tale of how important luck and good fortune have been in shaping his life. He narrates the story of an ordinary childhood in Norway and an unremarkable undergraduate career at university. After finishing his engineering degree, he served in the Norwegian army and married his childhood sweetheart, Inger Skramstad. His desire to make a better life for his new family led Ivar to Canada and then to the United States. Even without an advanced degree in a scientific field, Ivar was given the opportunity to work with cutting-edge scientific researchers at General Electric R&D in Schenectady, New York. While there, he completed his PhD at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute -- one of the United States' oldest technological universities. His work on superconductivity led to worldwide recognition and the Nobel Prize. This memoire is more than the story of an accomplished, world-renowned scientist: it is an engaging reminiscence of an independent, highly creative thinker and problem solver who loves games and puzzles, skiing and windsurfing, and time with friends and family. Dr Ivar Giaever's fascinating story intertwines his views on the nature of science, scientific processes, contemporary issues such as global warming, and the great benefits the Nobel Prize has afforded him. Written with humor and often tongue-in-cheek, 'I am the Smartest Man I know' is one man's meditation on science, intellectual inquiry, and life itself.
This volume is a collection of the Nobel lectures delivered by the prizewinners, together with their biographies and the presentation speeches by Nobel Committee members for the period 2006-2010. The criterion for the Physics award is to the discoverer of a physical phenomenon that changed our views, or to the inventor of a new physical process that gave enormous benefits to either science at large or to the public. The biographies are remarkably interesting to read and the Nobel lectures provide detailed explanations of the phenomena for which the Laureates were awarded the Nobel Prize.Aspiring young scientists as well as more experienced ones, but also the interested public will learn a lot from and appreciate the geniuses of these narrations.List of prizewinners and their discoveries:(2006) to John C Mather and George F Smoot “for their discovery of the blackbody form and anisotropy of the cosmic microwave background radiation”
The very detailed observations that the Laureates have carried out from the COBE satellite have played a major role in the development of modern cosmology into a precise science.(2007) to Albert Fert and Peter Grünberg “for the discovery of Giant Magnetoresistance”
Applications of this phenomenon have revolutionized techniques for retrieving data from hard disks. The discovery also plays a major role in various magnetic sensors as well as for the development of a new generation of electronics. The use of Giant Magnetoresistance can be regarded as one of the first major applications of nanotechnology.(2008) to Yoichiro Nambu “for the discovery of the mechanism of spontaneous broken symmetry in subatomic physics“, and to Makoto Kobayashi and Toshihide Maskawa “for the discovery of the origin of the broken symmetry which predicts the existence of at least three families of quarks in nature”
Why is there something instead of nothing? Why are there so many different elementary particles? The Laureates presented theoretical insights that give us a deeper understanding of what happens far inside the tiniest building blocks of matter.(2009) to Charles Kuen Kao “for groundbreaking achievements concerning the transmission of light in fibers for optical communication“, and to Willard S Boyle and George E Smith “for the invention of an imaging semiconductor circuit — the CCD sensor”
Kao's discoveries have paved the way for optical fiber technology, which today is used for almost all telephony and data communication. Boyle and Smith have invented a digital image sensor — CCD, or charge-coupled device — which today has become an electronic eye in almost all areas of photography.(2010) to Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov “for groundbreaking experiments regarding the two-dimensional material graphene”
The Laureates have shown that a thin flake of ordinary carbon, just one atom thick, has exceptional properties that originate from the remarkable world of quantum physics.
Twenty-five years after its initial publication, The Making of the Atomic Bomb remains the definitive history of nuclear weapons and the Manhattan Project. From the turn-of-the-century discovery of nuclear energy to the dropping of the first bombs on Japan, Richard Rhodes’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book details the science, the people, and the socio-political realities that led to the development of the atomic bomb.

This sweeping account begins in the 19th century, with the discovery of nuclear fission, and continues to World War Two and the Americans’ race to beat Hitler’s Nazis. That competition launched the Manhattan Project and the nearly overnight construction of a vast military-industrial complex that culminated in the fateful dropping of the first bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Reading like a character-driven suspense novel, the book introduces the players in this saga of physics, politics, and human psychology—from FDR and Einstein to the visionary scientists who pioneered quantum theory and the application of thermonuclear fission, including Planck, Szilard, Bohr, Oppenheimer, Fermi, Teller, Meitner, von Neumann, and Lawrence.

From nuclear power’s earliest foreshadowing in the work of H.G. Wells to the bright glare of Trinity at Alamogordo and the arms race of the Cold War, this dread invention forever changed the course of human history, and The Making of The Atomic Bomb provides a panoramic backdrop for that story.

Richard Rhodes’s ability to craft compelling biographical portraits is matched only by his rigorous scholarship. Told in rich human, political, and scientific detail that any reader can follow, The Making of the Atomic Bomb is a thought-provoking and masterful work.
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