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Alfred Fowler

Born: 22-Mar-1868
Birthplace: Wilsden, Yorkshire, England
Died: 24-Jun-1940
Cause of death: unspecified

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

Nationality: England
Executive summary: Celestial spectroscopy

Astrophysicist Alfred Fowler identified the bands in the spectra of stars, and found that sunspots are actually cooler than their surroundings. His studies established the presence of titanium oxide in cool stars, ionization in stellar atmosphere, magnesium hydride in sunspots, carbon monoxide in the tails of comets, and ozone in the Earth’s atmosphere. He was educated at London's Normal School of Science, which was later absorbed into Imperial College London, as was Fowler himself: at the age of seventeen he was appointed assistant in spectroscopy, and at twenty he was hired as an instructor of astrophysics. He worked at Imperial College until his death, and his students included H. G. Wells. He was the first General Secretary of the International Astronomical Union, and wrote most of its bylaws.

Wife: (married; one son, one daughter)

    High School: Imperial College London (1885)
    University: Imperial College London
    Scholar: Spectroscopy, Imperial College London (1882-1901)
    Teacher: Astrophysics, Imperial College London (1885-1915)
    Professor: Astrophysics, Imperial College London (1915-34)

    Commander of the British Empire 1935
    Bruce Medal 1934
    Henry Draper Medal 1920
    Royal Medal 1918
    Royal Astronomical Society Gold Medal 1915
    French Academy of Sciences Corresponding Member
    International Astronomical Union General Secretary (1919-25)
    National Academy of Sciences Foreign Associate
    Royal Astronomical Society President (1919-21)
    Royal Society 1910
    Lunar Crater Crater Fowler
    Asteroid Namesake 11765 Alfredfowler

Author of books:
How to Make A 2-Inch Telescope and What to See with It (1896)
Geometrical Astronomy and Astronomical Instruments (1914)


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