Scientific discoveries of Pierre Curie - Студенческий научный форум

XII Международная студенческая научная конференция Студенческий научный форум - 2020

Scientific discoveries of Pierre Curie

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French physicist Pierre Curie was born in Paris. He was the youngest of the two sons of the doctor Eugene Curie and Sophie-Claire (Depulli) Curie. The father decided to give his independent and reflective son a home education. The boy turned out to be such a diligent student that in 1876, sixteen years old, he received a bachelor's degree from the University of Paris (Sorbonne). Two years later, he received a license degree (equivalent to a master's degree) in physical sciences.

In 1878, Curie became a demonstrator at the Sorbonne Physical Laboratory, where he began to study the nature of crystals. Together with his older brother Jacques, who worked in the mineralogical laboratory of the University, Curie spent four years intensive experimental work in this area. The Curie brothers discovered piezoelectricity - the appearance of electric charges on the surface of certain crystals under the action of an externally applied force. They discovered the opposite effect: the same crystals under compression under the influence of an electric field. If an alternating current is applied to such crystals, they can be made to oscillate at ultra-high frequencies, at which the crystals will emit sound waves beyond the perception of human hearing. Such crystals have become very important components of radio equipment such as microphones, amplifiers and stereo systems. The Curie brothers designed and built such a laboratory device as a piezoelectric quartz balancer, which creates an electric charge proportional to the applied force. It can be considered the predecessor of the main components and modules of modern quartz watches and radio transmitters. In 1882, on the recommendation of an English physicist It can be considered the predecessor of the main components and modules of modern quartz watches and radio transmitters. In 1882, on the recommendation of an English physicist It can be considered the predecessor of the main components and modules of modern quartz watches and radio transmitters. In 1882, on the recommendation of an English physicist William Thomson Curie was appointed head of the laboratory of the new Municipal School of Industrial Physics and Chemistry. Although the salary at the school was more than modest, Curie remained the head of the laboratory for twenty-two years. A year after Curie was appointed head of the laboratory, the brothers' collaboration ceased, as Jacques left Paris to become a professor of mineralogy at the University of Montpellier.

Between 1883 and 1895, Curie completed a large series of works, mainly on crystal physics. His articles on the geometric symmetry of crystals still have not lost their significance for crystallographers. From 1890 to 1895, Curie studied the magnetic properties of substances at various temperatures. Based on a large number of experimental data in his doctoral dissertation, a relationship was established between temperature and magnetization, which later became known as the Curie law.

Working on a dissertation. Curie in 1894 met with Maria Sklodowska , a young Polish student at the Sorbonne's Faculty of Physics. They married in July 1895, a few months after Curie defended his doctoral dissertation. In 1897, shortly after the birth of her first child, Marie Curie began research on radioactivity, which soon absorbed Pierre's attention for the rest of his life.

In 1896, Henri Becquerel discovered that uranium compounds constantly emit radiation capable of illuminating a photographic plate. Having chosen this phenomenon as the topic of her doctoral dissertation, Marie began to find out if other compounds were emitting Beckerel rays. Since Becquerel discovered that the radiation emitted by uranium increases the electrical conductivity of the air near the preparations, she used the Curie brothers' piezoelectric quartz balancer to measure the electrical conductivity. Soon, Marie Curie came to the conclusion that only uranium, thorium and the compounds of these two elements emit Becquerel radiation, which she later called radioactivity. Mary at the very beginning of her research made an important discovery: uranium tar blende (uranium ore) electrifies the surrounding air much more strongly than the compounds of uranium and thorium contained in it, and even than pure uranium. From this observation, she concluded that a highly radioactive element was still unknown in the uranium resin blende. In 1898, Marie Curie reported the results of her experiments to the French Academy of Sciences. Convinced that his wife’s hypothesis was not only true, but also very important, Curie left his own research to help Mary highlight the elusive element. Since that time, the interests of the Curie spouses as researchers have merged so completely that even in their laboratory records they always used the pronoun “we”. and even than pure uranium. From this observation, she concluded that a highly radioactive element was still unknown in the uranium resin blende. In 1898, Marie Curie reported the results of her experiments to the French Academy of Sciences. Convinced that his wife’s hypothesis was not only true, but also very important, Curie left his own research to help Mary highlight the elusive element. Since that time, the interests of the Curie spouses as researchers have merged so completely that even in their laboratory records they always used the pronoun “we”. and even than pure uranium. From this observation, she concluded that a highly radioactive element was still unknown in the uranium resin blende. In 1898, Marie Curie reported the results of her experiments to the French Academy of Sciences. Convinced that his wife’s hypothesis was not only true, but also very important, Curie left his own research to help Mary highlight the elusive element. Since that time, the interests of the Curie spouses as researchers have merged so completely that even in their laboratory records they always used the pronoun “we”. Marie Curie reported on the results of her experiments at the French Academy of Sciences. Convinced that his wife’s hypothesis was not only true, but also very important, Curie left his own research to help Mary highlight the elusive element. Since that time, the interests of the Curie spouses as researchers have merged so completely that even in their laboratory records they always used the pronoun “we”. Marie Curie reported on the results of her experiments at the French Academy of Sciences. Convinced that his wife’s hypothesis was not only true, but also very important, Curie left his own research to help Mary highlight the elusive element. Since that time, the interests of the Curie spouses as researchers have merged so completely that even in their laboratory records they always used the pronoun “we”.

Curie set themselves the task of dividing uranium tar blende into chemical components. After laborious operations, they received a small amount of the substance with the highest radioactivity. It turned out. that the selected portion contains not one but two unknown radioactive elements. In July 1898, Curie published an article "On a Radioactive Substance in a Uranium Resin Blende", which reported on the discovery of one of the elements, named polonium in honor of the homeland of Maria Skłodowska. In December, they announced the discovery of the second element, which they called radium. Both new elements were many times more radioactive than uranium or thorium, and made up one millionth of the uranium resin blende. To isolate enough radium from the ore to determine its atomic weight, Curie processed several tons of uranium tar blende in the next four years. Working in primitive and harmful conditions, they performed chemical separation operations in huge vats installed in a leaky shed, and all analyzes were performed in the tiny, poorly equipped laboratory of the Municipal School.

In September 1902, the Curie spouses reported that they managed to isolate one tenth of a gram of radium chloride and determine the atomic mass of radium, which turned out to be 225. (Curie could not be isolated because it turned out to be a decay product of radium.) The radium salt emitted bluish glow and warmth. This fantastic looking substance attracted the attention of the whole world. Recognition and rewards for its discovery came almost immediately.

Curie published a huge amount of information about radioactivity that they collected during the research: from 1898 to 1904 they released thirty-six works. Even before completing your research. Curie encouraged other physicists to also study radioactivity. In 1903, Ernest Rutherford and Frederick Soddy suggested that radioactive radiation is associated with the decay of atomic nuclei. Decaying (losing some of the particles that form them), the radioactive nuclei undergo transmutation into other elements. Curie was one of the first to realize that radium can also be used for medical purposes. Noticing the effect of radiation on living tissue, they suggested that radium preparations may be useful in the treatment of tumor diseases.

The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences awarded the Curie spouses half of the 1903 Nobel Prize in Physics "in recognition of ... their joint research on radiation phenomena discovered by Professor Henri Becquerel, " with whom they shared the prize. Curie was ill and could not attend the award ceremony. In his Nobel lecture, two years later, Curie pointed out the potential danger posed by radioactive substances, if they fall into the wrong hands, and added that “belongs to those who, together with the Nobel, believe that new discoveries will bring more to humanity troubles than good. ”

Radium is an extremely rare element in nature, and its prices, given its medical significance, have risen rapidly. Curie lived poorly, and lack of funds could not but affect their research. However, they resolutely refused a patent for their extraction method, as well as the prospects for the commercial use of radium. According to them, this would be contrary to the spirit of science - the free exchange of knowledge. Despite the fact that such a refusal deprived them of considerable profit, Curie's financial situation improved after receiving the Nobel Prize and other awards.

In October 1904, Curie was appointed professor of physics at the Sorbonne, and Marie Curie was appointed head of the laboratory, which had previously been led by her husband. In December of the same year, Curie had a second daughter. Increased incomes, improved research funding, plans to create a new laboratory, admiration and recognition of the world scientific community should have made the subsequent years of the Curie spouses fruitful. But, like Becquerel, Curie passed away too soon, not having time to enjoy the triumph and fulfill his plan. On a rainy day, April 19, 1906, crossing the street in Paris, he slipped and fell. His head fell under the wheel of a passing horse-drawn carriage. Death came instantly.

Marie Curie inherited his chair at the Sorbonne, where she continued her research on radium. In 1910, she managed to isolate pure metallic radium, and in 1911 she was awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry. In 1923, Marie published a curie biography. Curie's eldest daughter, Irene ( Irene Joliot-Curie), shared with her husband the Nobel Prize in chemistry in 1935; the youngest, Eva, became a concert pianist and biographer of her mother. Serious, restrained, fully focused on his work, Curie was at the same time a kind and helpful person. He was quite widely known as an amateur naturalist. One of his favorite activities was walking or cycling. Despite being busy in the laboratory and family cares, Curie found time for joint walks.

In addition to the Nobel Prize, Curie was awarded several more awards and honors, including the Davy Medal of the Royal Society of London (1903) and the Matteucci Gold Medal of the National Academy of Sciences of Italy (1904). He was elected to the French Academy of Sciences (1905).

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