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Nobel Prizes and Laureates

Nobel Prizes and Laureates

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 1935
Frédéric Joliot, Irène Joliot-Curie

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Irène Joliot-Curie - Facts

Irène Joliot-Curie

Irène Joliot-Curie

Born: 12 September 1897, Paris, France

Died: 17 March 1956, Paris, France

Affiliation at the time of the award: Institut du Radium, Paris, France

Prize motivation: "in recognition of their synthesis of new radioactive elements"

Field: nuclear chemistry

Prize share: 1/2

Discovered Artificial Radioactivity

Radiation from radioactive substances also became an important tool in investigating atoms. When Irene Joliot-Curie and Frédéric Joliot bombarded a thin piece of aluminum with alpha particles (helium atom nuclei) in 1934, a new kind of radiation was discovered that left traces inside an apparatus known as a cloud chamber. The pair discovered that the radiation from the aluminum continued even after the source of radiation was removed. This was because aluminum atoms had been converted into a radioactive isotope of phosphorus. That meant that, for the first time in history, a radioactive element had been created artificially.

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