Marie Curie By: Anushiya Balakrishnan and Danielle Caruso “Nothing in life is to be feared—it is only to be understood.”
Scientist’s Life • Born November 7, 1867 in Warsaw, Poland • Named Maria Sklodowski – changed to Marie • Married scientist Pierre Curie who was already established as a scientist. He discovered piezoelectricity which is when, “physical pressure applied to a crystal results in the creation of an electric potential.”
Education • Parents were teachers so she learned the importance of education early. • After participating in students' revolutionary organization, she moved to Paris to continue science education in 1891 • She studied in Sorbonne, a famous Parisian University. Here she earned Licentiateships in Physics and the Mathematical Sciences • Received much recognition for isolating elements and contributing to science • Died July 4, 1934 due to pernicious anemia
Experiments • With A. Henri Becquerel and Pierre, she experimented with properties of the element uranium and uranium ore. She named the effect “radio-activity.” • She started checking other elements to determine if they were radioactive and found thorium, polonium, and a mixture called “pitch-blend” which was more powerful than the other two elements. • Marie and Pierre worked for four years to isolate the radioactive source which she named radium. They received a Nobel Prize in Physics. • Later discovered it wasn’t pure radium and she isolated that and received Nobel Prize in Chemistry.
Additional Info • Marie Curie’s model of the atom was unsure, since no scientists before her was successful in creating a true model. However in 1911, scientist Ernest Rutherford conducted experiments in which he observed that an atom consisted of a nucleus and other loose particles. • Marie Curie’s experiments, therefore, advanced our knowledge of elements uranium, thorium, polonium and radium. By discovering these elements not only did she explain radioactivity but gave scientists a chance to figure out their mass, atomic number, atomic weight, number of protons/electrons/neutrons…. Uranium
Scientific Achievements • First women to receive Nobel Prize • First person to receive two Nobel Prizes • Nobel Prize For Physics in January 1903 with her husband and Becquerel • Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1911 for working with radioactivity • Davy Medal of the Royal Society in 1903 with husband • Given a gram of radium in 1921 by US President Harding for achievements • First female Director of the Physics Laboratories at the Sorbonne after Pierre dies
Scientific Contributions • Discovered that radium/radioisotopes kills human cells. She reasoned that it could also kill cancer and tumor cells • Created mobile X-ray machine for use on battlefields • Helped discover nuclear power • Concluded that “the ability to radiate did not depend on the arrangement of the atoms in a molecule, it must be linked to the interior of the atom itself.” • Could also could be called mother of the atomic bomb through her work in radioactivity.
Websites Froman, Nanny. “Marie and Pierre Curie and the Discovery of Polonium and Radium.” NobelPrize.org. 1 Dec. 1996. Web. 29 Oct. 2010. Ham, Denise. “Marie SklodowskaCurie:The Woman Who Opened The Nuclear Age.” 21st Century Science Tech. n.d. Web. 25 Oct. 2010. Hole, Robert B. “Science Hero: Madame Curie.” My Hero. 20 Sep. 2006. Web. 22 Oct. 2010.