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Simon van der Meer
Born November 24, 1925 (1925-11-24) (age 84)
The Hague, The Netherlands
Nationality Dutch
Fields Physics
Known for Stochastic cooling
Notable awards Nobel Prize in Physics

Simon van der Meer (born November 24, 1925, The Hague, The Netherlands) is a Dutch accelerator physicist who won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1984 for his contributions to the project which led to the discovery of the W and Z particles at CERN.[1]

Contents

Biography

Simon van der Meer was born and grew up in The Hague, finishing his secondary education during the German occupation of the Netherlands. He studied Technical Physics at the Delft University of Technology, and received an engineer's degree in 1952. After worked for Philips for a few years, in 1956 he joined CERN, where he stayed until his retirement in 1990.[2]

He married Catharina M. Koopman in the mid-1960's; they have two children.

Scientific work

Van der Meer invented the technique of stochastic cooling of particle beams.[3] This technique was used to accumulate intense beams of protons and antiprotons in the Super Proton Synchrotron at CERN, which allowed the UA1 experiment, led by Carlo Rubbia, to produce W and Z bosons through 500 GeV proton-antiproton collisions in early 1983. The W and Z bosons had been theoretically predicted some years earlier, and their experimental discovery was considered a significant success for CERN. Van der Meer and Rubbia shared the 1984 Nobel Prize for their decisive contributions to the project.

Van der Meer and Ernest Lawrence are the only two accelerator physicists awarded with the Nobel prize.

References

External links

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Quotes

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Simon van der Meer (born November 24, 1925) is a Dutch accelerator physicist who won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1984 for his contributions to the project which led to the discovery of the W and Z particles at CERN.

Sourced

  • Above all, it's creative thinking that lies at the basis of discoveries. You must dare to think differently, see things from different sides, in order to come across fortuitous new ideas frequently. You should develop even the most stupid ideas and when you do this systematically, there will always come something useful out of it.
    • in De Libero van het CERN. Jaarboek 1985. Vereniging voor Technische Physica. TU Delft. p. 61.

External links

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