Melba Phillips, US physicist

Melba Phillips, US physicist

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Credit: EMILIO SEGRE VISUAL ARCHIVES/AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF PHYSICS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Caption: Melba Newell Phillips (1907-2004), US physicist. Phillips carried out her doctoral research at the University of California, Berkeley, under J. Robert Oppenheimer. This work led to the description in 1935 of what was called the Oppenheimer-Phillips effect concerning deuteron-induced nuclear reactions. Phillips went on to leading roles as an educator, but lost her job in 1952 after refusing to testify during the McCarthy era. She returned to teaching in 1957. She was Acting Executive Officer (1975-7) of the American Association of Physics Teachers. She also worked in Beijing after her retirement in 1972. Photograph by the Pach Brothers.

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