National Academy of Sciences (U.S.)

Interviewed by
Richard Hirsh
Interview date
Location
Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Abstract

Career of George B. Field, theoretical astrophysicist and administrator of astronomical research at the Harvard-Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO). Discussions of education at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Princeton and Harvard Universities, interest in cosmological problems; possible detection of hot intergalactic matter in 1964; colleagues at University of California at Berkeley; views on popularizing science; reactions to Sputnik launch in 1957; funding of research from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA); views on the manned space program; effects of Vietnam War on NASA and astronomical research; involvement with the Space Telescope; views of the Space Shuttle; extensive committee work for NASA; astronomical research under NASA; work at SAO; new programs at SAO, such as x-ray astronomy and the Multiple Mirror Telescope; service on the Jesse Greenstein and Allan Bromley survey committees of astronomy and physics; and his view of the universe. Also prominently mentioned are: Kinsey Anderson, Stuart C. Bowyer, Jim Bradley, Tony Calio, Riccardo Giacconi, Thomas Gold, Leo Goldberg, John Hagen, Noel Hinners, Fred Hoyle, Frank Martin, John Earl Naugle, Al Opp, Edward Mills Purcell, Martin Schwarzschild, Dennis William Sciama, Henry Smith, Sylvia Favior Smith, Lyman Spitzer, George Steiner, Frank Sulloway, Pat Thaddeus, James Van Allen, Fred Whipple; American Science and Engineering, Inc., Annual Review of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Congregational Church, Harvard College Observatory, Harvard University Society of Junior Fellows, High Energy Astronomy Observatory, Lick Observatory, National Academy of Sciences (U.S.) Astronomy Survey Committee, National Academy of Sciences (U.S.) Greenstein Committee, National Science Foundation (U.S.), New York Times, Orbiting Astronomical Observatory, Princeton University Matterhorn Project, Project Apollo, Skylab, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory Multiple Mirror Telescope, Smithsonian Institution National Air and Space Museum, Space Shuttle, United States Naval Ordnance Laboratory, United States Office of Management and Budget, United States Office of Naval Research, University of California at Berkeley, and Viking (Rocket).

Interviewed by
Martin Harwit
Interview date
Location
Dicke's office, Joseph Henry Physics Building, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey
Abstract

Comments on parents and teachers; schooling in Rochester; studies at University of Rochester and at Princeton University with comments on faculty and fellow students; thesis collaboration with John Marshall; Victor Weisskopf, M.I.T. and the Radiation Laboratory during war, microwave techniques applied to atomic physics. Return to Princeton after war, Angular Momentum of Radiation; 1957 and the start of cosmology and relativity publications; Eötvös experiment and Mach's principle; discussions of own and others' experimental work; big science; George Gamow, Ralph Alpher, Robert Herman; paper with P. James Peebles Nostrums and Conundrums; National Academy of Sciences; funding in science.

Interviewed by
Paul Edwards
Interview date
Location
University of California, Los Angeles
Abstract

In this interview, Akio Arakawa discusses topics such as: University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA); meteorology; his family and education; University of Tokyo; Japan Meteorological Agency; Hidetoshi Arakawa; fluid dynamics and thermodynamics; Michael Schlesinger; weather prediction; FORTRAN; UNIVAC; Yale Mintz; Chuck Leith; Mark Rhodes; Joseph Smagorinsky; Jule Charney; John Von Neumann; Syukuro Manabe; Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL); International Business Machines Corporation (IBM); Pierre Morel; David Randall; climate models; National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA); Milton Halem; Jim Hansen; United States Department of Transportation (DOT); Rand Corporation; Max Suarez; National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR); National Science Foundation (NSF); Thomas Rosmond; National Academy of Sciences; carbon dioxide.

Interviewed by
Paul Edwards
Interview date
Location
University of California, Los Angeles
Abstract

In this interview, Akio Arakawa discusses topics such as: University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA); meteorology; his family and education; University of Tokyo; Japan Meteorological Agency; Hidetoshi Arakawa; fluid dynamics and thermodynamics; Michael Schlesinger; weather prediction; FORTRAN; UNIVAC; Yale Mintz; Chuck Leith; Mark Rhodes; Joseph Smagorinsky; Jule Charney; John Von Neumann; Syukuro Manabe; Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL); International Business Machines Corporation (IBM); Pierre Morel; David Randall; climate models; National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA); Milton Halem; Jim Hansen; United States Department of Transportation (DOT); Rand Corporation; Max Suarez; National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR); National Science Foundation (NSF); Thomas Rosmond; National Academy of Sciences; carbon dioxide.

Interviewed by
Martin Harwit
Interview date
Location
Living room of Dr. Alpher's home, Schenectady, New York
Abstract

Session two is a joint interview with Robert Herman. Family background and early education, work at Carnegie Institution's Department of Terrestrial Magnetism, studies at George Washington University, wartime employment and studies, work with Navy on detection of mines; graduate studies with George Gamow while working at Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory, early universe theory, first encounter and later work with Robert Herman, interaction with physics community. Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar and L. R. Henrich, neglect of Alpher and Herman work by astronomical community; General Electric projects: supersonic flow, re-entry physics, the Talaria project; the Penzias/Wilson observations; honors, marriage. Miscellaneous recollections about youth in Washington, D.C., service on scientific committees, public education efforts, work at General Electric. Meeting of Alpher and Herman, their collaboration, cosmological theory, work with George Gamow, Edward Teller, Hans Bethe, Edward Condon, cosmic background radiation, controversy with steady-state adherents and others; systematic neglect of their work, nucleosynthesis in stars, reactions to awards, discussions with Arno A. Penzias at the time of Nobel Prize award (with Robert W. Wilson), correspondence with S. Pasternack about P. James Peeble's cosmology papers, Alpher paper on neutrino and photon background calculation, James Follin, C. Hayashi, Steven Weinberg's presentation in his book The First Three Minutes; current cosmological efforts, A. Zee's papers on cosmology, views on the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering, Fred Hoyle's recent writings. Also prominently mentioned are: Niels Henrik David Bohr, Albert Einstein, Richard Phillips Feynman, Lawrence Randolph Hafstad, Robert Hofstadter, Huntington, and H. P. Robertson.

Interviewed by
Martin Harwit
Interview date
Location
Schenectady, New York
Abstract

Session two is a joint interview with Robert Herman. Family background and early education, work at Carnegie Institution's Department of Terrestrial Magnetism, studies at George Washington University, wartime employment and studies, work with Navy on detection of mines; graduate studies with George Gamow while working at Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory, early universe theory, first encounter and later work with Robert Herman, interaction with physics community. Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar and L. R. Henrich, neglect of Alpher and Herman work by astronomical community; General Electric projects: supersonic flow, re-entry physics, the Talaria project; the Penzias/Wilson observations; honors, marriage. Miscellaneous recollections about youth in Washington, D.C., service on scientific committees, public education efforts, work at General Electric. Meeting of Alpher and Herman, their collaboration, cosmological theory, work with George Gamow, Edward Teller, Hans Bethe, Edward Condon, cosmic background radiation, controversy with steady-state adherents and others; systematic neglect of their work, nucleosynthesis in stars, reactions to awards, discussions with Arno A. Penzias at the time of Nobel Prize award (with Robert W. Wilson), correspondence with S. Pasternack about P. James Peeble's cosmology papers, Alpher paper on neutrino and photon background calculation, James Follin, C. Hayashi, Steven Weinberg's presentation in his book The First Three Minutes; current cosmological efforts, A. Zee's papers on cosmology, views on the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering, Fred Hoyle's recent writings. Also prominently mentioned are: Niels Henrik David Bohr, Albert Einstein, Richard Phillips Feynman, Lawrence Randolph Hafstad, Robert Hofstadter, Huntington, and H. P. Robertson.