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Aage N. Bohr

Aage N. BohrAKA Aage Niels Bohr

Born: 19-Jun-1922
Birthplace: Copenhagen, Denmark
Died: 8-Sep-2009
Location of death: Copenhagen, Denmark
Cause of death: unspecified

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

Nationality: Denmark
Executive summary: Determined shapes of nuclei

Nuclear physicist Aage N. Bohr was the son of Niels Bohr, a key atomic physicist among whose contributions are included a model of the atom with electron orbits and corresponding energy levels. Although Lutheran, Bohr's family was originally Jewish and in 1943 both father and son fled for Sweden, where they remained until the end of the war.

Bohr and Ben R. Mottelson were both puzzling over behaviors of the atomic nucleus which were not adequately explained by current models. The two began a collaboration, the fruit of which was three papers in 1952-53, explaining a non-spherical shape of the nucleus, its deformation manifested from the rotational motion and interactions of nucleons. Essentially, they combined aspects of the 1949 "shell" model of Jensen and Goeppert-Mayer with an earlier "droplet" model from the mid-1930s which was proposed to explain fluctuations observed during certain types of uranium fission. Observations taken by nuclear spectroscopy, at the time a new technology, confirmed the Mottelson/Bohr model.

Father: Niels Bohr (physicist and Nobel Laureate, b. 7-Oct-1885, d. 18-Nov-1962)
Mother: Margrethe Nørlund
Wife: Marietta Soffer (m. 1950, d. 1978, two sons, one daughter)
Son: Vilhelm
Son: Tomas
Daughter: Margrethe
Wife: Bente Scharff Meyer (m. 1981, until his death)

    High School: Sortedam Gymnasium
    University: PhD, University of Copenhagen (1954)
    Scholar: Institute of Theoretical Physics, University of Copenhagen (1946-56)
    Professor: University of Copenhagen (1956-62)
    Administrator: Director, Institute of Theoretical Physics, University of Copenhagen (1962-65)
    Administrator: Director, Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen (1965-70)
    Administrator: Director, Nordic Institute for Theoretical Nuclear Physics (1975-81)

    Nobel Prize for Physics 1975 (with Ben R. Mottelson and James Rainwater)
    American Academy of Arts and Sciences Foreign Honorary Member
    Pontifical Academy of Sciences
    Manhattan Project
    Jewish Ancestry

Author of books:
Rotational States of Atomic Nuclei (1954, physics)
Nuclear Structure (1969-75, physics, 2 volumes; with Ben R. Mottelson)

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