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Parity conservation: an inviolable principle?


Interaction with other MIT students
Murray Gell-Mann Scientist
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It was mainly Viki [Victor Weisskopf] and the people in Viki's group, the post-docs and graduate students, those were the people I interacted with. Murph Goldberger came after the first year. He came as a post-doc and I learned a great deal from him and, well I, of course had a very close relationship with him for — a professional relationship — for many years. And I talked with the other post-docs and with the other graduate students and with Viki. That was… those were my main interactions. Herman Feshbach was also on the faculty. He was a protegeé of Viki's, and Viki thought very highly of him, but I never thought he was anywhere near as interesting as Viki.

[Q] How about Morse? Did Morse play any..?

Phil Morse was around… I didn't see much of him. Seemed like a very nice man but I didn't… I didn't see much of him.

New York-born physicist Murray Gell-Mann (1929-2019) was known for his creation of the eightfold way, an ordering system for subatomic particles, comparable to the periodic table. His discovery of the omega-minus particle filled a gap in the system, brought the theory wide acceptance and led to Gell-Mann's winning the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1969.

Listeners: Geoffrey West

Geoffrey West is a Staff Member, Fellow, and Program Manager for High Energy Physics at Los Alamos National Laboratory. He is also a member of The Santa Fe Institute. He is a native of England and was educated at Cambridge University (B.A. 1961). He received his Ph.D. from Stanford University in 1966 followed by post-doctoral appointments at Cornell and Harvard Universities. He returned to Stanford as a faculty member in 1970. He left to build and lead the Theoretical High Energy Physics Group at Los Alamos. He has numerous scientific publications including the editing of three books. His primary interest has been in fundamental questions in Physics, especially those concerning the elementary particles and their interactions. His long-term fascination in general scaling phenomena grew out of his work on scaling in quantum chromodynamics and the unification of all forces of nature. In 1996 this evolved into the highly productive collaboration with James Brown and Brian Enquist on the origin of allometric scaling laws in biology and the development of realistic quantitative models that analyse the influence of size on the structural and functional design of organisms.

Tags: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Victor Weisskopf, Marvin Goldberger, Herman Feshbach, Philip Morse

Duration: 1 minute

Date story recorded: October 1997

Date story went live: 24 January 2008