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Louis Néel

Louis NéelAKA Louis-Eugène-Félix Néel

Born: 22-Nov-1904
Birthplace: Lyon, France
Died: 17-Nov-2000
Location of death: Brive-Corrèze, France
Cause of death: unspecified

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

Nationality: France
Executive summary: Magnetic properties of solids

Military service: French Army (WWII)

In 1932, building on Werner Heisenberg's work, French physicist Louis Néel suggested the existence of antiferromagnetism, a previously unrecognized form of magnetism in which the magnetic field creates parallel but opposing spins which can vary with temperature. In 1947, he showed that in some materials the magnetic moments are unequal, a phenomenon called ferrimagnetism (not to be confused with ferromagnetism, the common form of magnetism exhibited by metals containing iron, nickel, cobalt, etc.). His work was important to the development of modern solid state physics and microwave electronics, the manufacturing of ferromagnetic materials, and the synthesis of ferrite materials. He shared the 1970 Nobel Prize for Physics with Swedish scientist Hannes Alfvén.

Wife: Hélène Hourticq (m. 1931, two daughters, one son)
Daughter: Marie Françoise (diplomat)
Daughter: Marguerite Guély
Son: Pierre (television producer)

    University: BS, École Normale Supérieure (1928)
    University: PhD, University of Strasbourg (1932)
    Lecturer: École Normale Supérieure (1928-32)
    Teacher: University of Strasbourg (1932-37)
    Professor: University of Strasbourg (1937-45)
    Professor: Grenoble Institute of Technology (1945-70)
    Administrator: French National Center for Scientific Research, Paris (1946-70)
    Administrator: Grenoble Institute of Technology (1954-70)
    Administrator: Center for Nuclear Studies, Grenoble (1956-70)
    Administrator: French National Polytechnical Institute, Grenoble (1970-76)

    Croix de Guerre with Palms, 1940
    French Legion of Honor Chevalier, 1940
    French Legion of Honor Officer, 1941
    Fernand Holweck Prize 1952
    Order of Academic Palms Commander, 1957
    French Legion of Honor Commander, 1958
    Knighthood French Social Order of Merit, 1963
    Gold Medal of the French National Center for Scientific Research 1965
    French Legion of Honor Grand Officer, 1966
    Nobel Prize for Physics 1970 (with Hannes Alfvén)
    American Academy of Arts and Sciences Foreign Member, 1966
    French Academy of Sciences 1953
    French Atomic Energy Commission
    French Physical Society President, 1957
    German Academy of Sciences Leopoldina Foreign Member, 1964
    International Union of Pure and Applied Physics President, 1963-66
    NATO Official Scientific Committee, 1949-69
    Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences Foreign Member, 1959
    Royal Society Foreign Member, 1966
    Rumanian Academy Foreign Member, 1965
    Russian Academy of Sciences Foreign Member, 1959

Author of books:
Œuvres Scientifiques de Louis Néel (Scientific Works) (1978)


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