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Gravestone of Lise Meitner, 1987

Gravestone of Lise Meitner, 1987

C013/5230

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Credit

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

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Editorial use only.

Caption

Gravestone of Lise Meitner. German chemist Lise Meitner (1878-1968) was a pioneer of nuclear chemistry. She worked with Otto Hahn in the 1930s on uranium bombarded with neutrons, but they did not realise fission was occurring. In 1938, Meitner (who was Jewish) fled Nazi Germany to Sweden. By 1939, both had worked out that nuclear fission was taking place. This led to the building of the first atomic bomb. Hahn, but not Meitner, received the 1944 Nobel Prize for Chemistry. Meitner was buried in St James Churchyard in Bramley, Hampshire, UK, with the epitaph: 'A physicist who never lost her humanity'. Photographed in 1987.

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