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Emilio Segrè

Emilio SegreEmilio Segrè (1905-1989) was born near Rome, Italy. He made important contributions to nuclear physics as a student and colleague of Enrico Fermi in Rome, then emigrated to the United States, where he worked in the Manhattan Project at Los Alamos during World War II. He later joined the University of California, Berkeley faculty and worked at the Radiation Laboratory (now Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory), where he codiscovered the elements technetium and astatine and the fissionable isotope of plutonium. He shared the Nobel Prize in Physics with Owen Chamberlain in 1959 for the discovery of the antiproton.

In his later years Segrè turned himself into a first-class historian of physics; his historical surveys, From X-Rays to Quarks: Modern Physicists and Their Discoveries and From Falling Bodies to Radio Waves: Classical Physicists and Their Discoveries and his biography Enrico Fermi: Physicist are widely used. He collected photos to illustrate these books, and was an avid photographer himself; his pictures are one of the highlights of the Emilio Segrè Visual Archives.



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