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Paul W. Merrill

AKA Paul Willard Merrill

Born: 15-Aug-1887
Birthplace: Minneapolis, MN
Died: 19-Jul-1961
Cause of death: Heart Failure

Gender: Male
Religion: Congregationalist
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Astronomer, Physicist
Party Affiliation: Republican

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: S-process of nucleosynthesis

Astronomer Paul W. Merrill studied peculiar stars, binary orbits, and hydrogen emission in stars, made early contributions to infrared photography of stellar spectra, and became a prominent expert on long-period variable stars. He worked on the design of airborne cameras, and wrote the first scientific paper on airborne astronomy. He discovered diffuse interstellar absorption lines, and showed that technetium-99 is present in S-type stars, a finding considered direct evidence of the slow-neutron-capture-process (s-process) of nucleosynthesis.

Wife: Ruth Currier Merrill (m. 12-Sep-1913)
Son: Donald Merrill

    Bruce Medal 1946
    Henry Draper Medal 1945
    Carnegie Institution for Science Researcher (1952-61)
    American Astronomical Society President (1956-58)
    Astronomical Society of the Pacific President (1927)
    National Academy of Sciences
    National Research Council
    Royal Astronomical Society Foreign Member
    California State Official Board of Directors, Pasadena (1930-31)
    National Institute of Standards and Technology Physicist (1916-19)
    Asteroid Namesake 11768 Merrill
    Lunar Crater Merrill
    Risk Factors: Arthritis

Author of books:
The Nature of Variable Stars (1938)
Spectra of Long-Period Variable Stars (1940)
Lines of the Chemical Elements in Astronomical Spectra (1956)
Space Chemistry (1963)

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