Bernard Vonnegut

Infobox_Scientist
name = Bernard Vonnegut


image_width =
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birth_date = August 29, 1914
birth_place = Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
death_date = April 25, 1997, USA
death_place = Albany, New York, USA
field = Atmospheric sciences, chemical engineering
work_institution = General Electric Research Laboratory, SUNY-Albany
alma_mater = Massachusetts Institute of Technology (B.S., 1936; Ph.D., 1939)
doctoral_advisor =
doctoral_students =
known_for = atmospheric chemistry, cloud seeding, atmospheric electricity and lightning
prizes =
footnotes =
Dr. Bernard Vonnegut (August 29, 1914April 25, 1997) was an American atmospheric scientist credited with discovering that silver iodide could be used effectively in cloud seeding to produce snow and rain. He is the older brother of American novelist Kurt Vonnegut.

Vonnegut was born in Indianapolis, Indiana. He attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, receiving his B.S. in chemistry (1936) and Ph.D. in physical chemistry (1939) there.

Professional career

In 1945, Vonnegut went to work at the General Electric Research Laboratory in Schenectady, New York. It was there, on November 14, 1946, that he discovered that silver iodide could be used as a nucleating agent to seed clouds. Seeding clouds involves inserting large quantities of a nucleating agent into clouds to facilitate the formation of ice crystals. The intent of this process is to cause the clouds to produce rain or snow. Rain- and snow-making companies still use silver iodide as a nucleating agent in seeding clouds.

Vonnegut left General Electric in 1952 and went to work at Arthur D. Little, Inc. In 1967, Vonnegut became a professor of atmospheric sciences at the University at Albany, The State University of New York. He was named a professor emeritus upon his retirement in 1985.

Vonnegut accumulated 28 patents during his career.

He was awarded an Ig Nobel Prize in 1997 for his paper "Chicken Plucking as Measure of Tornado Wind Speed."

Personal life

He was married to Lois Bowler Vonnegut, who died in 1971, and had five sons.

He died of cancer on April 25, 1997, at St. Peter's Hospital in Albany, New York.

His brother, Kurt Vonnegut, has alluded to Bernard's work in some of his novels and non-fiction works.

External links

* [http://www.atmos.albany.edu/deas/bvonn/bvonnegut.html Professional biography - University at Albany website]
*

Persondata
NAME= Vonnegut, Bernard
ALTERNATIVE NAMES=
SHORT DESCRIPTION=American atmospheric scientist, chemist
DATE OF BIRTH= August 29, 1914
PLACE OF BIRTH= Indianapolis, Indiana
DATE OF DEATH= April 25, 1997
PLACE OF DEATH= Albany, New York


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