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Portrait of Pavel Cerenkov

Portrait of Pavel Cerenkov

H403/0036

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Credit

SPUTNIK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SPUTNIK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Pavel Cerenkov, Russian physicist, born Voronezh Guberniya on August 10, 1904, photographed (on right) at the controls of a synchrotron at the Institute of Physics of the Soviet Academy of Science, in 1959. His important discovery in 1934 involved the velocity of high-energy subatomic particles, which is never greater than the velocity of light in a vacuum. Light travelling through water, however, moves more slowly: a high- energy particle moving through water may exceed the velocity of light in that medium. When it does it creates a "wake" of light - termed Cerenkov radiation. For this work, Cerenkov, Frank & Tamm shared the 1958 Nobel Prize in physics.

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