Portrait of Otto Frisch, physicist

Portrait of Otto Frisch, physicist

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Otto Frisch (1904-79), Austrian-British physicist. Frisch was born in Vienna, and studied physics there. He later worked in Berlin, then Hamburg, but was sacked in 1933 due to the Nazi anti-Jewish laws. He worked for a while in London, then in Copenhagen. In 1938, he heard from his aunt (Lise Meitner) of the observations of Hahn on the decay of uranium under neutron bombardment. Frisch used Bohr's idea of the atomic nucleus as being like a droplet of water to visualise the effect. He showed that uranium was the best element for this process (which he named nuclear fission), and that an excess of neutrons produced could lead to a chain reaction.

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Keywords: discoverer, droplet model theorist, fission, frisch, nuclear, nuclear fission, otto r., physicist, portraits, surname f, uranium

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