Ernest Rutherford
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Occupation
Ernest Rutherford worked in atomic physics.
Birth
August 30th, 1871
Death
October 19th, 1937
Place of Birth
Spring Grove, Nelson Province, New Zealand
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What they are known for
Ernest Rutherford discovered that atoms are controlled by a nucleus. Most of the atom’s mass was condensed into the nucleus. The nucleus is a positive force surrounded by free flying electrons, negative particles. He found out that there were different parts of the atom by splitting the said “indestructible” atom. He also discovered Alpha and Beta and Gamma particles.

Science Explained
Most of each atom is compressed into its nucleus, so if all of the electrons (other parts of the atom) were condensed into our nuclei, we would take up as much space as a grain of sand. He split the atom. Uranium, Rutherford discovered, gave off two different kinds of rays. One kind was stopped by few inches of air, or something like a sheet of paper. He called it the Alpha ray. The second kind could go through 5 millimeters of aluminum. He called it the Beta ray. The third kind of ray, the Gamma ray, was unaffected by magnetic fields.

Career
Rutherford went to work in the Cavendish Laboratory in Cambridge (in the U.K.), with J.J. Thomson. He made an impact on Cambridge with his radio wave detector, but soon turned to work in atomic physics. He got a position as a professor of physics at McGill University in 1898, but was drawn back to U.K. in 1907, where he succeeded Arthur Schuster at Manchester. In WW1 Rutherford researched methods of finding submarines. In 1919 he moved back to Cambridge and became director of the Cavendish Laboratory after Thomson.

Did you know?
  • Rutherford was the 4th of twelve children.
  • In 1908, he received a Nobel Prize for chemistry.
  • His father was a wheelwright.
  • He invented a radio receiver that could detect radio waves at half a mile.

References
Campbell, John. “Ernest Rutherford- Scientist Supreme.” Ernest Rutherford- Scientist Supreme. AAS Publications. 2013. Web. 4 Sept. 2013."Ernest Rutherford - Biographical". Nobelprize.org. Nobel Media AB 2013. Web. 19 Sep 2013.
“Ernest Rutherford.” Access Science. Helicon Publishing, 2013. 5 Sept. 2013.
"Ernest Rutherford - Biographical". Nobelprize.org. Nobel Media AB 2013. Web. 19 Sep 2013.
"Ernest Rutherford." Britannica School. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 2013. Web. 8 Sep. 2013.
Grolier Educational Staff. The Grolier Library of Science Biographies Volume 8. Danbury, CT: Grolier, 1997. Print.

Heilbron, J.L. Ernest Rutherford and the Explosion of Atoms. New York: Oxford UP, 2003. Print
"radioactivity." Britannica School. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 2013. Web. 8 Sep. 2013.