Bernard Lovell


Bernard Lovell

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name = Sir Bernard Lovell
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caption = Image credit: Jodrell Bank, University of Manchester
birth_name = Alfred Charles Bernard Lovell
birth_date = birth date and age|1913|8|31
birth_place = Oldland Common, Bristol, England
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occupation = Radio astronomer
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Sir Alfred Charles Bernard Lovell - better known as Sir Bernard Lovell OBE PhD FRS (born 31 August 1913 [GRO Register of Births: DEC 1913 5c 885 KEYNSHAM - Alfred CB Lovell, mmn = Adams] ) is an English physicist and radio astronomer. He was the first Director of Jodrell Bank Observatory, from 1945 to 1980.

Career

Born in Oldland Common, Bristol, he studied physics at the University of Bristol, obtaining a Ph.D. in 1936. He worked in the cosmic ray research team at the University of Manchester until the outbreak of World War II, during which he worked for the Telecommunications Research Establishment (TRE) developing radar systems to be installed in aircraft, among them H2S, for which he received an OBE in 1946.

He attempted to continue cosmic ray work with an ex-military radar unit and following interference from trams on Manchester's Oxford Road moved to Jodrell Bank Observatory, near Goostrey in Cheshire, an outpost of the university's botany department. He was able to show that radar echoes could be obtained from daytime meteor showers. With university funding he constructed the then-largest steerable radio telescope in the world, which now bears his name - the Lovell Telescope. Nearly 50 years later, it remains one of the foremost radio telescopes in the world.

He was knighted in 1961 for his important contributions to the development of radio astronomy, and has a secondary school named after him in Oldland Common, Bristol, which Sir Bernard Lovell officially opened.cite web | url=http://www.sirbernardlovell.s-gloucs.sch.uk/ | title=Sir Bernard Lovell School in Oldland Common | accessdate=2006-11-22] A building on the QinetiQ site in Malvern is also named after him.

The first name of the fictional scientist Bernard Quatermass, the hero of several BBC Television science-fiction serials of the 1950s, was chosen in honour of Lovell.cite book | last=Murray| first=Andy | title=Into the Unknown: The Fantastic Life of Nigel Kneale |format=paperback|year=2006 | location=London|publisher=Headpress | id=ISBN 1-900486-50-4 | pages=p. 28]

Awards

* 1946 — Officer of the Order of the British Empire
* 1960 — Royal Medal
* 1961 — Knighthood
* 1969 — Lorimer Medal of the Astronomical Society of Edinburgh
* 1980 — Benjamin Franklin Medal
* 1981 — Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society

Bibliography

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Footnotes

References


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