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George Paget Thomson

George Paget ThomsonBorn: 3-May-1892
Birthplace: Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England
Died: 10-Sep-1975
Location of death: Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England
Cause of death: unspecified

Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Physicist

Nationality: England
Executive summary: Diffraction of electrons

Military service: Queen's Royal West Surrey Regiment (to Captain; 1914-20)

George Paget Thomson discovered the wave-like diffraction of electrons in 1927, for which he won the Nobel Prize for Physics ten years later. His Nobel honor was shared with Clinton Davisson, who made the same discovery independently. During World War II he chaired Britain's MAUD Committee, which determined that construction of atomic weapons was feasible. His father, J. J. Thomson, discovered the electron and won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1906.

Father: J. J. Thomson (physicist)
Mother: Rose Elizabeth Paget (m. 22-Jan-1890)
Sister: Joan Paget Thomson
Wife: Kathleen Buchanan Smith Thomson (m. 1924, d. 1941, two sons, two daughters)
Son: John Adam Thomson (United Nations diplomat, b. 1927)
Son: David Paget Thomson (businessman, b. 1931)
Daughter: Lilian Clare Thomson de Villiers Graaff

    High School: The Perse School, Cambridge, England
    University: Trinity College, Cambridge University (1913)
    Lecturer: Cambridge University (1914-22)
    Professor: Natural Philosophy, University of Aberdeen (1922-30)
    Professor: Physics, Imperial College London (1930-52)
    Professor: Corpus Christi College, Cambridge University (1952-62)
    Administrator: Master, Corpus Christi College, Cambridge University (1952-62)

    Nobel Prize for Physics 1937 (with Clinton J. Davisson)
    Hughes Medal 1939
    Knight of the British Empire 1943
    Royal Medal 1949
    MAUD Committee Chair, 1940-41
    American Academy of Arts and Sciences Foreign Member
    British Eugenics Society
    Royal Society

Author of books:
The Atom (1930, non-fiction)
The Wave Mechanics of Free Electrons (1930, non-fiction)
Theory and Practice of Electron Diffraction (1939, non-fiction; with William Cochrane)
The Atom and The Foreseeable Future (1955)
The Inspiration of Science (1961)
J.J. Thomson and the Cavendish Laboratory in His Day (1965, history)


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