Oral history interview with Bengt Georg Daniel Strömgren, 1976 May 6 and 13.


Oral history interview with Bengt Georg Daniel Strömgren, 1976 May 6 and 13.

Family background and early interest in astronomy (Elis Strömgren). Undergraduate and graduate studies at University of Copenhagen, late 1920s; studies at Niels Bohr Institute, 1927-1929; thesis work in classical astronomy (orbits of comets). Development of photoelectric photometry and observations; early electronics, 1925; conflicting results in calculations of opacities (Arthur Stanley Eddington, Gaunt, Thomas T. Sugihara, Svein Rosseland, J. R. Oppenheimer, Meghnad N. Saha, R. H. Fowler, E. Arthur Milne, Cecilia Payne-Gaposchkin); assistant at University of Copenhagen, 1929; LaSilla Observatory. To University of Chicago and Yerkes Observatory (Otto Struve), 1936-1939; starts work on formation of H #II regions, 1939; work at Mt. Wilson Observatory on absorption lines (Walter S. Adams, Theodore Dunham); estimates of ages of stars (Hans Bethe); Hubble Constant; comparison of astronomy in Europe and U.S.; European astronomers in U.S. (Gerard Kuiper, Polydore Swings, Carl Osbourne, Ejnar Hertzsprung); comments on history of Yerkes (Struve), teaching at Chicago; discussion of work on equation of ionization and calculations of opacities (Carl von Weizsäcker, Struve, S. Chandrasekhar); comments on W. W. Morgan. Discussion of work on stellar evolution, ionization of interstellar hydrogen (Struve). Effects of World War II on astronomy; influence of European astronomers on Americans; Ludwig Biermann; European Southern Observatory; views on radio-astronomy after World War II (Grote Reber). Astronomy in Denmark during war; stellar evolution (Anders Reitz, George Gamow); Strömgren becomes director of Copenhagen Observatory; developments in astrophysics during the war; optical studies. Nazi occupation of Niels Bohr Institute (Werner Heisenberg); contacts with German astronomers; development of Brorfelde Observatory. Becomes director of Yerkes and McDonald Observatory (Robert Hutchins), 1950-1957; American astronomy after World War II; relation of scientific community and government (Office of Naval Research); stellar classification work. Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton (Oppenheimer), investigation of intermediate population II and extreme population II, 1957; establishment of Kitt Peak Observatory; return to Denmark, 1967. Also prominently mentioned are: Niels Bohr, Werner Bolton, George Ellery Hale, Jacobus C. Kapteyn, Lev Landau, and Harlow Shapley.

Sound recordings: 3 sound cassettes (ca. 4.0 hrs.), 2 sessions.Transcript: 55 p.


SNAC Resource ID: 8300346

Related Entities

There are 32 Entities related to this resource.

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w67n11r6 (corporateBody)

The Niels Bohr Library is part of the Center for History of Physics of the American Institute of Physics. Its primary mission is to preserve and make known the history of modern physics and allied sciences. The photograph collection is named in honor of Emilio Segrè, best known for his Nobel Prize-winning work in nuclear and high-energy physics, but also an avid photographer and author of books on the history of modern physics. From the description of The Emilio Segrè visual archiv...

Gaposchkin, Cecilia Helena Payne, 1900-1979

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6f010vf (person)

Celilia Helena Payne Gaposchkin (1900-1979) taught astronomy at Harvard. She earned her AB at Newnham College, Cambridge University in 1923 and a Ph.D. from Radcliffe College in 1925. She began working at the Harvard Observatory in 1923. She was the Phillips Astronomer at the Harvard Observatory in 1938, Professor of Astronomy, 1956-1966, Chair of the Astronomy Department, 1956-1960 (the first female department Chair at Harvard) and Phillips Professor of Astronomy, Emerita, from 1967; at the tim...

Bohr, Niels, 1885-1962

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6t836n5 (person)

Niels Bohr was a Danish physicist who made tremendous contributions to his field, transforming accepted notions of atomic structure, helping to develop nuclear fission, and advocating for international cooperation in crafting responsible nuclear policy. Bohr was born in Copenhagen in 1885 into a family that encouraged his academic pursuits. Christian Bohr, his father, was professor of physiology at the University of Copenhagen. Bohr credited his father for awakening hi...

Eddington, Arthur Stanley, Sir, 1882-1944

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w63x86jr (person)

Astronomer and Fellow of the Royal Society. From the description of Papers. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 83660356 From the description of Letters. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 82863606 From the description of Papers, 1905-1928. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 78824422 Educated at Owen's College, Manchester and Trinity College, Cambridge. Senior Wrangler, 1904. Smith's Prizeman, 1907. Chief Assistant, Royal Observatory (Greenwich), 1906-1913. Plumian Prof...

McDonald Observatory

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6zk9bs7 (corporateBody)

Kitt Peak National Observatory

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6gr0tn6 (corporateBody)

University of Chicago.

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6449cnx (corporateBody)

Most of the records in the collection pertain to the $400,000 raised by the American Baptist Education Society in 1889-1890 in order to obtain a 600,000 grant from John D. Rockefeller for the creation of an endowment for the University of Chicago. The first volume in the inventory, Record of Pledges for the University of Chicago, contains an alphabetical numbered listing of subscribers, amounts pledged, and payments made through 1906. The subscription forms and letters (1:4-13) are numbered to c...

Shapley, Harlow, 1885-1972

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6pn96xk (person)

Astronomer (galaxies, photometry, spectroscopy) and administrator. Astronomer, Mount Wilson Observatory, 1914-1921; director, Harvard Observatory, 1921-1952; on the astronomy faculty at Harvard from 1952. From the description of Papers [microform], 1910-1923. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 80523781 Harlow Shapley (1885-1972) was an astronomer. Shapley served as director of the Harvard College Observatory and was a professor at Harvard University, eventually he became the Pai...

Kapteyn, J.C. (Jacobus Cornelius), 1851-1922

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6668kwg (person)

Milne, Edward Arthur, 1896-1950

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6fb55vg (person)

Palomar Observatory

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6h45nff (corporateBody)

Palomar Observatory is located in Pasadena, California, and is owned and operated by the California Institute of Technology. Built in 1928, it boasts several telescopes. However, the most famous is the 200-inch Hale Telescope built using a Pyrex blank manufactured by Corning Glass Works. The Hale Telescope was installed in 1948 and became fully operational and open to researchers in 1950....

Adams, Walter S. (Walter Sydney), 1876-1956

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w63n23sm (person)

Adams was the astronomer of stellar spectroscopy at Mount Wilson Observatory, 1904-1923, and Director, 1923-1946. From the description of Correspondence, 1881-1939. (American Philosophical Society Library). WorldCat record id: 86165432 Astronomer. From the description of Papers, 1923-1956. [microform]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 79843223 Walter Sydney Adams (1876-1956, APS 1915), astronomer, explored the uses of spectroscopy, investigate...

Hoddeson, Lillian

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w65x2d63 (person)

United States. Office of Naval Research

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6nk74nd (corporateBody)

The original "Survey of large-scale computers and computer projects" was published by the Office of Naval Research in 1947 and 1948. It was revised and updated in 1950 under the title, HIGH-SPEED COMPUTING DEVICES (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1950). This work was contracted out to the Minneapolis, Minn., firm of Engineering Research Associates and was an attempt to survey the state of computer technology at a time when the Navy was weighing the possibility of supporting the development of the electro...

Landau, L. D. (Lev Davidovich), 1908-1968

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w65q4xkx (person)

Major affiliations include: Joffe, Acad. A. F., Institute of Physics and Technology, (Lenin), Leningrad, USSR, 1917-1932; University of Kharokov, Kharkov, USSR, 1932-1937; and Academy of Sciences of the USSR, Moscow, Russia, USSR, 1937-1967. From the description of Golden stock: list of quantum physics articles, 1933-1941, selected by Landau, [n.d.]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 78435311 ...

Oppenheimer, J. Robert, 1904-1967

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6v1266v (person)

Died 1967. From the description of Oral history interview with J. Robert Oppenheimer, 1963 November 18 and 20. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 80709804 Physicist (quantum theory and nuclear physics). On the physics faculty at California Institute of Technology and University of California, Berkeley in theoretical physics, 1929-1947; director of Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory, 1943-1945; chairman of the General Advisory Committee of the Atomic Energy Commission, 1946-1952; d...

European Southern Observatory.

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w64v0mws (corporateBody)

Kuiper, Gerard P. (Gerard Peter), 1905-1973

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6fq9wjf (person)

Hale, George Ellery, 1868-1938

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w69p32w4 (person)

George Ellery Hale was an astrophysicist. He was the organizer and director of the Mount Wilson Observatory of the Carnegie Institute of Washington, 1904-1923, and was honorary director until his death in 1938. His principal scientific researches were made in stellar spectroscopy. From the description of Papers, 1903-1935. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 82798019 From the description of Papers, 1882-1937. (American Philosophical Society Library). WorldCat record id: 122523501...

Chandrasekhar, S. (Subrahmanyan), 1910-1995

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6df6sq7 (person)

Astrophysicist. B.A., Presidency College, Madras University, 1930. Ph. D., Cambridge University, 1933; Sc. D., 1942. Research Associate, Yerkes Observatory, University of Chicago, 1937. Assistant Professor, University of Chicago, 1938; Associate Professor, 1942; Professor, 1944; Distinguished Service Professor, 1946; Morton D. Hull Distinguished Service Professor of Theoretical Astrophysics, 1952. Managing editor, Astrophysical Journal, 1952-1971. Nobel Prize in Physics, 1983. From t...

Institute for advanced study Princeton, N.J.

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6gx82t3 (corporateBody)

Strömgren, Bengt (1908-1987).

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6s75hqw (person)

Bengt Georg Daniel Strömgren was an astrophysicist who died in 1987. From the description of Papers. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 83299855 Died 1987. From the description of The development of astrophysics as a research field in the 20th century: paper presented at the American Association for the Advancement of Science's George Ellery Hale Centennial Symposium, Dallas, 1968. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 78201727 Bengt Georg Daniel Strömgren (1908-...

Morgan, W. W. (William Wilson), 1906-1994

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6r216sh (person)

Received his B.S. (1927) and Ph.D. (1931) from the University of Chicago. Emeritus Professor of Astronomy at the University of Chicago, 1974-1994. Director of Yerkes and McDonald Observatories, 1960-63. Died in 1994. From the description of Oral history interview with William Wilson Morgan, 1987 October 07. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 81865422 William Wilson Morgan was born on January 3, 1906, in Bethesda, Tennessee. His father and his mother were both home m...

Hertzsprung, Ejnar, 1873-1967

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w64j0g9d (person)

Astronomer (stellar spectra and distances). On the astronomy faculty at Universität Göttingen (1909-1919); and Rijksuniversiteit te leiden 91920-1944); on the staff of the observatory at Leiden (1914-1944), director, (1935-1944). From the description of Correspondence, 1903-1966. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 78544160 Astronomer (steller spectra and distances). On the astronomy faculty at Universität Göttingen, 1909-1919; and Rijksuniversiteit te Leiden, 1920-1944; on t...

Struve, Otto, 1897-1963

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6tx3gk4 (person)

Astronomer (astrophysics of stars, spectroscopy, interstellar studies, origin of universe) and administrator. On the staff of Yerkes Observatory, 1921-1932, director, 1932-1950; editor, ASTROPHYSICS JOURNAL, 1932-1947; on the astrophysics faculty, department chair, and director, Leuschner Observatory, University of California, Berkeley, 1950-1959; and director, National Radio Astronomy Observatory from 1959. From the description of Selected correspondence [microform], 1932-1945. (Unk...

Baym, Gordon.

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w64q81rm (person)

University of California (1868-1952)

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6m940p0 (corporateBody)

Administrative History During the mid-twentieth century, the American Labor Movement reached a pinnacle of power and influence within society. The Second World War required that labor be managed as a strategic resource; the high productivity of workers during the war carried over in the peace time economy, which experienced a sustained economic "boom." Unlike European labor relations, where unions play an "official" role in government, the Am...

Gamow, George, 1904-1968

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6154j8k (person)

George Gamow: physicist, astronomer, and author. Born Georgii Antonovič Gamov. Barbara Merrihew Perkins: editor and translator. From the description of George Gamow and Barbara Gamow papers, 1915-1975 (bulk 1950-1975). (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981157 Russian-born American physicist, early advocate of the "Big Bang" theory of the origin of the universe. Professor of Physics at George Washington University, 1934-1956. While a student at the Institute of Theoretical Ph...

Bethe, Hans A. (Hans Albrecht), 1906-2005

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6pn965q (person)

Physicist. From the description of Hans Albrecht Bethe oral histories, 1966-1981. (Cornell University Library). WorldCat record id: 63935483 Alsatian-born American physicist, winner of the 1967 Nobel Prize for physics. From the description of Typed letter signed : Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, to Samuel Goudsmit, 1936 June 6. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270953107 Unpublished document written as chapter 13 of the Smyth Report. Letters about it ...

Yerkes Observatory

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w64786cx (corporateBody)

Yerkes Observatory, located in Williams Bay, Wisconsin, is a facility of the University of Chicago's Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics. The observatory opened in 1897 as the joint creation of three founders: William Rainey Harper, the first president of the University of Chicago; Professor George E. Hale, the observatory's first director; and Charles T. Yerkes, a wealthy Chicago businessman who provided funds for the erection of the observatory building. Known as the home of the last of t...

Weizsäcker, Carl Friedrich, Freiherr von, 1912-2007

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6z89gt7 (person)

Heisenberg, Werner, 1901-1976

http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w6j967hs (person)

Physicist (quantum theory, quantum mechanics, uncertainty principle, unified field theory) and administrator. On the physic faculty at Universität Göttingen (1923-1924, 1925-1926); Kovenhavens Universitet (1924-1925, 1926-1927); Universität Leipzig (1927-1941); director, Kaiser-Wilhelm Institut für Physik (1941-1945); director, Max-Planck Institut für Physik (1946-1958); and director, Max-Planck Institut für Physik und Astrophysik (1958-1970). From the description of Papers. (U...