Six Experiments That Changed the World: Marie Curie's Radium (2000)

Channel 4

Marie Sklodowska Curie, Physics Nobel 1903; Chemistry Nobel, 1911
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Date Added: 9 years ago.

Documentary Description

Science documentary series in which actor, comedian and science fanatic Ken Campbell recreates historical experiments. The discovery of radium and radioactivity which facilitated the manufacture of atomic weapons. The programme also presents a chronological account of Marie Curie's personal life.

Marie Sklodowska Curie (7 November 1867 – 4 July 1934) was a physicist and chemist of Polish upbringing and subsequent French citizenship. She was a pioneer in the field of radioactivity and the first person honored with two Nobel Prizes - in physics and chemistry. She was also the first female professor at the University of Paris. She was born Maria Sklodowska in Warsaw (then in Vistula Land, Russian Empire; now in Poland) and lived there until she was twenty-four. In 1891 she followed her older sister Bronislawa to study in Paris, where she obtained her higher degrees and conducted her subsequent scientific work. She founded the Curie Institutes in Paris and Warsaw. Her husband Pierre Curie shared her Nobel prize in physics. Her daughter Irène Joliot-Curie and son-in-law, Frédéric Joliot-Curie, also shared a Nobel prize. Her achievements include the creation of a theory of radioactivity (a term she coined, techniques for isolating radioactive isotopes, and the discovery of two new elements, polonium and radium. Under her direction, the world's first studies were conducted into the treatment of neoplasms (cancers) using radioactive isotopes. While an actively loyal French citizen, she never lost her sense of Polish identity. She named the first new chemical element that she discovered polonium (1898) for her native country, and in 1932 she founded a Radium Institute (now the Maria Sklodowska–Curie Institute of Oncology) in her home town, Warsaw, headed by her physician sister Bronislawa.
Sources: BFI & Wikipedia

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