Lise Meitner - (1878-1968) Austrian Jewish-born physicist who worked closely with Otto Hahn and Max Planck on atomic research and certainly deserved a share of Hahns 1944 Nobel for the discovery of fission. The top female physicist of the 20thC.--she is often depicted as the "poor" victim of anti-woman and anti-Jewish discrimination. Born of Jewish parents in Vienna (they were both Jewish-she was not "part" Jewish as sometimes reported). She converted to Lutheranism in 1908. One biographer says this was not "opportunistic". Yeah, right. It wasnt tough enough being a woman, add a Jew on top of that. She came from an "assimilated" background--so throwing off her her Jewishness was not hard. But you dont see a lot of contemporary Jewish scientists in the US converting away, do you? No, because no matter how assimilated--it makes no difference today if you are Jewish. In pre-WWII Europe, if one was assimilated, converting away removed an important professional impediment that seemed a "relic". Meitner was the physicist; Hahn the chemist--and she was as important as he in the discovery of fission. Meitner buried her head in the sand and continued to work with Hahn until 1938 (later by correspondence). She hoped her Austrian citizenship, wartime service, and powerful friends would protect her. Well, the Nazis would not make an exception for her. And maybe it is just as well--because if they had--she probably would have been forced to be part of the German weapons program. Hahn "failed" to adequately inform the Nobel commitee of her contribution and she did not get credit. Although she did get the Fermi Prize in 1966 as a consolation. She never complained much about Hahns behavior. Most speculate because she didnt want to be closely associated with fission/the atom bomb. She refused to work on the Manhattan project. (Eds. Note--This long entry is an attempt, thru one life, to explain why so many of the listed scientists and others have the notation converted to Christianity.)
crystallographer, computer simulation 1984 (JYB 2005 p214)
co-founder of the Mikoyan Gurevich (MiG) aircraft design bureau
Modified Newtonian Dynamics (MOND)
(JYB 1977 p207)
American. Nobel Prize, 1969. For this contributions concerning the classification of elementary particles and their interactions. Gell-Mann is clearly one of the great physicists of our time. He discovered and coined the term "quark". There is a wonderful piece about Gell-Mann and Feynman at this web address: http://www.theatlantic.com/issues/2000/07/johnson.htm
Israeli (US-born) physicist; co-developer of the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen paradox. Some astrophysicists believe that this paradox may allow for the movement to another universe via "wormholes". A term familiar to any Star Trek fan. (1909-1995)
physicist, Vice-President of the Royal Society 1965-67.
Son of Niels Bohr. Shared 1975 Nobel Prize for work on atomic structure which, in part, elucidated fathers theories. Only one-quarter Jewish, but he did go into his fathers business. Like his father, he had to flee to Sweden during WWII.
historian of science
First American of any faith to win a Nobel Prize in Science (1907). Developer of precise optical instruments that, among other things, allowed for measuring the speed of light. Michelson, who was born in Poland, came to the US as a small child. He was a graduate of the Annapolis, the US Navy Academy. He taught Physics at the Academy in the 1870s. A building is named in his honor at the Academy. Michelson (and Morley) also conducted a famous experiment which showed that there was no "ether"--a hypothetical substance that many scientists speculated effected the propagation of light. Michelson volunteered for service at the beginning of WWI (he was 65) and was given the rank of Lieut. Commander (he served stateside).
The most respected scientist of the 20th century. Nobel Prize, 1921. What can we say or add? To those who follow these things casually, Time Magazine named Einstein their "Person of the Century".
measured speed of light, Nobel Prize (1907) (Jewish father)
aero-engineer (JYB 2005 p214)
physicist, Nobel Prize (2003)