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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Chien-Shiung Wu (1912-1997), Chinese-US physicist, in her laboratory at Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts, USA. Born in China, Wu moved to the USA in 1936, becoming a physics professor at Columbia University, New York, in 1957. In 1956, Wu and Tsung-Dao Lee experimentally confirmed a theory that parity is violated during weak radioactive decay, overturning many basic assumptions of particle physics. The 1957 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded to Lee and Yang for this work, while Wu was overlooked but received the 1978 Wolf Prize in Physics for her work. Wu's work, which included muonic spectra, confirmed other particle theories.
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