Willard Libby


Willard Libby

Infobox_Scientist
name = Willard Frank Libby


image_width =
caption = Willard Libby
birth_date = December 17, 1908
birth_place = Grand Valley, Colorado, Colorado
residence = United States
nationality = American
death_date = death date and age|1980|9|8|1908|12|3
death_place = Cambridge, England
field = Radioactivity
work_institution = Columbia University
University of Chicago
University of California, Los Angeles
alma_mater = University of California, Berkeley
Princeton University
doctoral_advisor =
doctoral_students =
known_for = Radiocarbon dating
prizes = Nobel Prize for Chemistry (1960)
religion =
footnotes =

Willard Frank Libby (December 17, 1908 – September 8, 1980) was an American physical chemist, famous for his role in the 1949 development of radiocarbon dating, a process which revolutionized archaeology.

Libby was born in Grand Valley, Colorado. He received his B.S. in 1931 and Ph.D. in 1933 in chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley, where he then became a lecturer and later assistant professor. Libby spent the 1930s building sensitive geiger counters to measure weak natural and artificial radioactivity. In 1941 he joined Berkeley's chapter of Alpha Chi Sigma.

Awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, he spent most of 1941 at Princeton University. After the start of World War II, he worked on the Manhattan Project at Columbia University with Nobel laureate chemist Harold Urey. Libby was responsible for the gaseous diffusion separation and enrichment of the Uranium-235 which was used in the atomic bomb on Hiroshima.

In 1945 he became a professor at the University of Chicago. In 1954, he was appointed to the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission. In 1959, he became Professor of Chemistry at University of California, Los Angeles, a position he held until his retirement in 1976. He taught honors freshman chemistry from 1959 to 1963 (in keeping with a University tradition that senior faculty teach this class). He was Director of the University of California statewide Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics (IGPP) for many years including the lunar landing time. In 1966 he married Leona Woods Marshall, an original experimentor on the world's first nuclear reactor and a UCLA professor of environmental engineering. He also started the first Environmental Engineering program at UCLA in 1972.

In 1960, Libby was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for leading the team (namely, post-doc James Arnold and graduate student Ernie Anderson, with a $5,000 grant) that developed Carbon-14 dating. He also discovered that tritium could be used for dating water, and therefore wine.

He attended Analy High School in Sebastopol, CA. The school library has a mural of Libby, and a nearby highway is named in his honor.

Works

*Libby, Willard F., "Radiocarbon dating", 2d ed., University of Chicago Press, 1955.

External links

* [http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/chemistry/laureates/1960/libby-bio.html The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 1960]
* [http://www.mnsu.edu/emuseum/information/biography/klmno/libby_willard.html Biography of Willard Libby]
* [http://www.english.ucla.edu/ucla1960s/6667/shonnard2.htm UCLA Biography]
* [http://osulibrary.oregonstate.edu/specialcollections/coll/pauling/peace/people/libby.html A digitized collection of documents] related to Libby's contacts with Linus Pauling

References

*cite journal
title=Atmospheric Helium Three and Radiocarbon from Cosmic Radiation | author=W.F. Libby | journal=Physical Review | volume=69 | issue=11-12 | pages=671–672 | year=1946 | url=http://link.aps.org/abstract/PR/v69/p671/s2 | doi=10.1103/PhysRev.69.671.2


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  • Willard Libby — Willard Frank Libby Willard Frank Libby (Grand Valley (Colorado), 17 décembre 1908 Los Angeles, 8 septembre 1980) est un physicien et chimiste américain, célèbre pour son rôle dans le développement de la méthode de datation par le carbone 14, qui …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Willard Libby — Willard Frank Libby (Grand Valley, Estados Unidos, 17 de diciembre de 1908 Los Ángeles, 8 de septiembre de 1980) fue un químico y profesor universitario estadounidense galardonado con el Premio Nobel de Química del año 1960. Contenido 1 Biografía …   Wikipedia Español

  • Willard Frank Libby — (17 décembre 1908, Grand Valley, Colorado, États Unis 8 septembre 1980, Los Angeles) est un physicien et chimiste américain connu pour son rôle dans le développement de la méthode de datation par le carbone 14, qui a révolutionné l archéologie.… …   Wikipédia en Français

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  • Willard — (as used in expressions) Allport, Gordon W(illard) Gibbs, J(osiah) Willard Libby, Willard (Frank) Marriott, J(ohn) Willard Quine, W(illard) V(an) O(rman) …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Willard Frank Libby — (* 17. Dezember 1908 in Grand Valley, Colorado; † 8. September 1980 in Los Angeles) war ein US amerikanischer Chemiker und Physiker. Für die Entwicklung der Radiokohlenstoffmethode zur Bestimmung des Alters archäologischer Funde erhielt er 1960… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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  • Willard — ist der name folgender Orte in den Vereinigten Staaten: Willard (Colorado) Willard (Georgia) Willard (Kansas) Willard (Missouri) Willard (New Mexico) Willard (New York) Willard (North Carolina) Willard (Ohio) Willard (Utah) Willard (Virginia)… …   Deutsch Wikipedia


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