Carnegie-Mellon University

formerly Carnegie Institute of Technology

Interviewed by
David Zierler
Interview dates
May 20 & June 10, 2020
Location
Video conference
Abstract

In this interview, Fred Gilman, Buhl Professor of Theoretical Physics at Carnegie Mellon University discusses his career as a theoretical physicist and hopes for the future. He details his early passion for theoretical physics and his decision to attend Michigan State University for his undergraduate degree. He discusses attending Princeton University for graduate school and his thesis on Baryon Electromagnetic Mass Differences with his advisor Murph Goldberger. Gilman describes his time at Caltech as an NSF postdoctoral fellow. He discusses being a postdoc in the theoretical physics group at SLAC and his work on deep inelastic scattering. He details his involvement with the Superconducting Super Collider and the eventual decision to shut down its construction. Gilman reflects on his involvement with the Snowmass Conference as well as his work on the High-Energy Physics Advisory Panel. Lastly, Gilman speaks about his excitement for future discoveries from the Vera Rubin Observatory and his hopes for Carnegie Mellon and their involvement with physics.

Interviewed by
David Zierler
Interview date
Location
Video conference
Abstract

In this interview, David Zierler, Oral Historian for AIP, interviews Norman Wagner, Unidel Robert L. Pigford Chair in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Delaware. Wagner recounts his childhood in Pennsylvania and his undergraduate experience at Carnegie Mellon and his decision to study chemical engineering at Princeton. He discusses his graduate research at Los Alamos and Sandia and his postdoctoral research in Germany.  The bulk of the interview covers Wagner’s wide-ranging research agenda at the University of Delaware.  He discusses his strategic partnership with the NIST Center for Neutron Research, and the range of commercial endeavors that he has been involved in as a result of his research in soft matter physics. Wagner explains his work in biomedical engineering, and his collaboration with NASA on Mars-related research.  At the end of the interview, Wagner provides a broad-based explanation of rheology and its development as a distinct scientific field.

Interviewed by
Lanfranco Belloni
Interview date
Location
Genoa, Italy
Abstract

Family background, early education with Carlo Perrier in chemistry and physics at Università di Genova; theoretical inclinations, study abroad, impressions of a research world (U.S.) "on a different scale" from Italy; catalytic role of Giovanni Polvani and Piero Caldirola of Università di Milano in helping to establish solid state theory in Italy. Scientific activity in close connection with Frederick Seitz and the Urbana school, as well as with Nevill Mott. International recognition of the new Italian "school" at the International School of Physics "Enrico Fermi" in 1958. Lack of interest of northern Italian industries. First move toward Gruppo nazionale di struttura della materia (GNSM), the group of solid state physics within the Consiglio nazionale delle ricerche (CNR); discussion of the relation between industry and academic world in Italy, especially concerning physics departments. Also prominently mentioned are: Giuseppe Bassani, Lina Buiatti, Careri, Vittorio Celli, Gianfranco Chiarotti, Roberto Fieschi, Lina Buiatti Fumi, Luigi Giulotto, Aldo Iandelli, Alfonso Merlini, Giuseppe Occhialini, Luigi Rolla, Mario Tosi; Atomic Energy Laboratory (Ispra), Carnegie Institute of Technology, Fulbright Program, Istituto nazionale di fisica nucleare (Rome), Institute of International Education, and Varenna Summer School.

Interviewed by
John L. Heilbron
Interview date
Location
Professor Estermann’s office, London, England
Abstract

This interview was conducted as part of the Archives for the History of Quantum Physics project, which includes tapes and transcripts of oral history interviews conducted with circa 100 atomic and quantum physicists. Subjects discuss their family backgrounds, how they became interested in physics, their educations, people who influenced them, their careers including social influences on the conditions of research, and the state of atomic, nuclear, and quantum physics during the period in which they worked. Discussions of scientific matters relate to work that was done between approximately 1900 and 1930, with an emphasis on the discovery and interpretations of quantum mechanics in the 1920s. Also prominently mentioned are: Doermer, Alfred Landé, Wolfgang Pauli, Otto Stern, M. Volmer, A. Walther; Carnegie Institute, and Universität Hamburg.

Interviewed by
Stuart "Bill" Leslie
Interview date
Location
Creutz's home, Rancho Santa Fe, New Mexico
Abstract

In this interview, Edward Creutz discusses topics such as: his family background; Gregory Breit; doing his postgraduate work at the University of Wisconsin on nuclear physics; Ray Herb; Julian Mack; Fred de Hoffmann; Eugene Wigner; going to Princeton as a research assistant working on the small cyclotron; Carnegie Institute of Technology; Frederick Seitz; Office of Naval Research (ONR); Urner Liddel; Atomic Energy Commission (AEC); helping to build the first commercial nuclear reactor; working in the metallurgical lab at the University of Chicago working on the metallurgy of uranium; General Dynamics and General Atomic; Los Alamos; Niels Bohr; Richard Courant; TRIGA (Training Research Isotopes General Atomic) reactors; Lothar Nordheim; Hans Bethe; Edward Teller; Richard Feynman; Ted Taylor; Marshall Rosenbluth; Doug Fouquet; High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR); Freeman Dyson; Don Kerst.

Interviewed by
Stuart "Bill" Leslie
Interview date
Location
Creutz's home, Rancho Santa Fe, New Mexico
Abstract

In this interview, Edward Creutz discusses topics such as: his family background; Gregory Breit; doing his postgraduate work at the University of Wisconsin on nuclear physics; Ray Herb; Julian Mack; Fred de Hoffmann; Eugene Wigner; going to Princeton as a research assistant working on the small cyclotron; Carnegie Institute of Technology; Frederick Seitz; Office of Naval Research (ONR); Urner Liddel; Atomic Energy Commission (AEC); helping to build the first commercial nuclear reactor; working in the metallurgical lab at the University of Chicago working on the metallurgy of uranium; General Dynamics and General Atomic; Los Alamos; Niels Bohr; Richard Courant; TRIGA (Training Research Isotopes General Atomic) reactors; Lothar Nordheim; Hans Bethe; Edward Teller; Richard Feynman; Ted Taylor; Marshall Rosenbluth; Doug Fouquet; High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR); Freeman Dyson; Don Kerst.

Interviewed by
Lillian Hoddeson and Leonard Dobrzynski
Interview date
Location
Paris, France
Abstract

Autobiographical highlights relevant to solid state physics history in France. Transport of interests from Carnegie Institute of Technology (centering around Frederich Seitz) to Paris (by Aigrain) and start of semi-conductor research in France at College de France and its satellites. Contribution of his students and co-workers.