Era – Electronic

1901 – Fermi – bio

Enrico Fermi was born in Rome, Italy in 1901 and was known as a physicist who helped to create the first nuclear reactor. He worked on the project known as “Chicago Pile-1” which created the first controlled nuclear fission reaction. Subatomic particles that follow Fermi-Dirac statistics are called “fermions” in his honor. At Los Alamos, […]

1930 – Cooper – bio

Leon Cooper was born in 1930 in New York, USA. He is most known for discovering how electrons pair together, creating a state of less resistance, known as superconductivity. These are now called, “Cooper pairs”. Bardeen, Cooper, and Schrieffer, built on this concept to create a theory of superconductivity in 1957. The three of them […]

1953 – DNA – Watson and Crick

In 1953, James Watson and Francis Crick published an article in the journal, “Nature”. The article, titled “Molecular Structure of Nucleic Acids: A Structure for Deoxyribose Nucleic Acid”, described the DNA double helix structure which stores and replicates genetic information. When the two identical halves of the helix separate, the chemical bonds which held them […]

1981 – space shuttle

The space shuttle is a reusable orbital vehicle that jettisons two solid rocket boosters and an external fuel tank before entering Earth orbit. The shuttle flew a total of 135 missions between 1981 and 2011. In 1986, the Challenger was destroyed by an explosion, resulting in the loss of all seven crew members. In 2003, […]

1946 – ENIAC

In 1947, the Electronic Numerical Integrator And Computer (ENIAC) became the first general purpose electronic computer. It cost $500,000 to build, used 19,000 vacuum tubes, measured 30 feet by 50 feet and weighed 30 tons. There was no software for the machine. It operated like a large array of adding machines wired together. Programming was […]

1925 – electron “spin”

The electron acts more like a rotating cloud of electromagnetic charge than like a particle. The rotation or angular momentum of the field is called “electron spin”. The credit for discovering electron spin has been given by history to Samuel Goudsmit and George Uhlenbeck in 1925. Ralph Kronig proposed the idea earlier in the year, […]

1953 – MASER

In 1953, Townes, Gordon and Zeiger built the first MASER (Microwave Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation). It worked by stimulating ammonia to produce a coherent beam of microwave radiation. A few years later, the same principle was extended to create the first LASER which emitted coherent light. PRECURSOR: 1917 – quantum radiation theory (Einstein) […]

1977 – Voyager 1 & 2 launched

Voyager – The Interstellar Mission – [] Voyager Mission Fast Facts – [] Launch Voyager 2 launched on August 20, 1977, from Cape Canaveral, Florida aboard a Titan-Centaur rocket. On September 5, Voyager 1 launched, also from Cape Canaveral aboard a Titan-Centaur rocket. Planetary Tour Between them, Voyager 1 and 2 explored all the giant […]

1922 – Brillouin scattering

Leon Brillouin predicted that light could be scattered when traveling through a medium that interacts with sound waves. Sound waves (and some other types of waves) can compress a fluid medium, creating a density wave which changes the index of refraction, which in turn changes the way light moves through the medium, causing the scattering. […]

1938 – telomeres

In 1938 Hermann Muller coined the word, “telomere” (from the greek roots of tel and mere) to describe small end caps on the chromosomes of fruit flies. Two years later, Barbara McClintock, working independently on genetic research with maize, discovered that without the end caps, chromosomes can become stuck together, causing damage. It is now […]