J.J. Thomson

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Ernest Rutherford also known as The Lord Rutherford of Nelson, born on the 30/08/1871, was born in Brightwater, Tasman District, New Zealand and is renowned as the father of nuclear physics and is considered the greatest experimentalist. He succeeded in differentiating between alpha and beta radiation, at McGill University. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work into the disintegration of elements and the chemistry of radioactive substances. In addition, he set forth the laws of radioactive decay. He completed his first degree at the University of New Zealand and began teaching at a school in New Zealand, where he taught unruly pupils. He later got a scholarship to Cambridge University, where he became J.J Thomson’s first graduate student at the newly open Cavendish Laboratory. After that he began to experiment with radio waves and later on went to join Thomson’s investigation of conducting electricity through gases. However, after breakthroughs by Marie Curie and Henri Becquerel in the field of radioactivity he turned his attention to this branch. In 1898, Marie Curie (Polish physicist) and Pierre Curie (French physicist) were one of the first scientists to isolate radium and polonium from pitchblende (uraninite). Henri Becquerel received a Nobel Prize for his work, finding radioactivity in uranium. Wilhelm Konrad Rontgen also received a Nobel Prize for discovering the X-ray. These breakthroughs aforementioned were why he turned his attention to radioactivity. His ability to work creatively, not only by himself, but also with other associates, whom most were already established in the field of science. He worked with names such as Frederick Soddy (radioactive decay), Hans Geiger, Niels Bohr (whose model of ato... ... middle of paper ... ...particle will change. Due to the work of Ernest Rutherford, other scientists could work out the charge of a proton. Through the experiments that were conducted by other scientists, we worked out that each proton carries has the same amount of charge (same as an electron) and the mass is 1840 times heavier than an electron. =1.67252 ×〖10〗^(-24 ) g = Mass of a proton However, the structure proposed by Rutherford left one unsolved problem. At this stage, scientists knew that Hydrogen, which was one of the simplest atoms contained one proton and Helium contained two protons. Therefore, the ratio of the mass is 1:2. Nonetheless, the correct ratio is 4:1. This left the scientists speculating that an atom contained another sub-atomic particle in the nucleus. An English Physicist, James Chadwick, provided the proof that an atom contained yet another sub-atomic particle.

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