AIP History Center Newsletter
Volume XXXII, No. 1, Spring 2000

 

Niels Bohr Archive Expands in New Quarters
by Finn Aaserud, Director

During the last year, important developments have taken place at the Niels Bohr Archive (NBA) in Copenhagen. After nearly ten years, we have moved back to our original location in Niels Bohr’s old villa at the Niels Bohr Institute (NBI). The NBA now occupies the whole top floor, plus an adjacent library room on the top floor of the refurbished building previously housing the NBI’s high-voltage laboratory. A substantial effort has been put into furnishing the new library, as well as moving, unpacking and putting our book collections on shelves. Apart from setting up computer terminals for our researchers, as well as some minor installations to be paid from the remainder of the generous grant provided by the Villum Kann Rasmussen Foundation, the library is now ready for users. The NBI has also provided a large basement room to house all the NBA’s fireproof safes containing the various archival material.

Beginning in January 1999, the Danish Research Ministry has agreed to increase its annual support, so that only a small part of the expense (along with additional projects) has to be sought from private foundations. The increase was supplied on the understanding that the NBA organizes activities promoting natural science for gymnasium (high-school) students. In the fall of 1999, the NBA was either the host or cohost of a number of lectures to this effect and also took part in a well-attended NBI arrangement at the annual “Kulturnatten” (Culture Night) in Copenhagen.

The NBA has received support from the Danish National Lottery, as well as from the AIP Center for History of Physics and a private foundation, for the organization, conservation, and registration of the papers of Aage Bohr and Allan Mackintosh. This work is expected to be completed during 2001. Meanwhile, Volume 10 of the Niels Bohr Collected Works was published in January 1999. Entitled Complementarity Beyond Physics (1928_1962), it was edited by David Favrholdt, professor of philosophy at the University of Odense, and published by Elsevier Science in Amsterdam. After the death of Hanna Kobylinski, widow of Niels Bohr’s close collaborator Stefan Rozental, the NBA was given a substantial part of Rozental’s rich book collection, which includes a number of classics in the history of modern physics.

The effort to make the NBA’s photograph collection available on the World Wide Web approaches completion. Substantial work has also been done on the conversion of the NBA library catalog to the NBI’s new on-line cataloging system. Both the photograph collection and library information will be part of the NBA’s new Web site, which will include updated information on all the NBA’s collections and activities, at the URL http://www.nbi.dk/nba/. The NBA continues to be visited by researchers from all over the world. With our new library and Web site we expect a further increase in our service functions for researchers. For further information contact Dr. Finn Aaserud, Niels Bohr Institute, Blegdamsvej 17, DK-2100 Copenhagen Ø, Denmark; e-mail: aaserud@nbi.dk.


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