Felix Bloch

Felix Bloch

Felix Bloch was born into a Jewish family in Zurich, Switzerland, on 23rd October, 1905. He studied mathematics, engineering and physics in Zurich before moving to Germany to study under Werner Heisenberg at the University of Leipzig..

In 1928 Bloch published his doctoral thesis which became the basis for the quantum theory of electrical conduction. Over the next five years he worked with Niels Bohr and Enrico Fermi and other leading scientists working in this field.

When Adolf Hitler gained power in 1933 Bloch emigrated to the United States and worked at Stanford University where he continued his research into neutrons.

In 1943 Bloch joined the Manhattan Project. In the United States. Over the next two years he worked with Robert Oppenheimer, Edward Teller, Otto Frisch, Felix Bloch, Enrico Fermi, David Bohm, James Chadwick, James Franck, Emilio Segre, Niels Bohr, Eugene Wigner, Leo Szilard and Klaus Fuchs in developing the atom bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

After the war Bloch returned to Stanford University where he continued his research and in 1953 he won the Nobel Prize for his work on nuclear magnetic resonance. The following year Bloch was appointed the first Director General of CERN in Geneva. Felix Bloch died in 1983.

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