Felix Bloch

Felix Bloch

:"This page addresses only the Swiss physicist, for the man accused of espionage see Felix Bloch (diplomatic officer)"Infobox_Scientist
name = Felix Bloch

imagesize = 150px
caption = Felix Bloch (1905-1983)
birth_date = birth date|1905|10|23|mf=y
birth_place = Zürich, Switzerland
death_date = death date and age|1983|9|10|1905|10|23
death_place = Zürich, Switzerland
nationality = Switzerland
field = Physics
work_institutions = Stanford University
alma_mater = ETH Zürich and University of Leipzig
doctoral_advisor = Werner Heisenberg
doctoral_students =
known_for = NMR
Bloch wall
prizes = nowrap|Nobel Prize for Physics (1952)
footnotes =

Felix Bloch (October 23, 1905 – September 10, 1983) was a Swiss - American Jewish physicist, working mainly in the U.S..

Life and work

Bloch was born in Zürich, Switzerland to Jewish parents Gustav and Agnes Bloch. He was educated there and at the Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule, also in Zürich. Initially studying engineering he soon changed to physics. During this time he attended lectures and seminars given by Peter Debye and Hermann Weyl at ETH Zürich and Erwin Schroedinger at the neighboring University of Zürich. A fellow student in these seminars was John von Neumann. Graduating in 1927 he continued his physics studies at the University of Leipzig with Werner Heisenberg, gaining his doctorate in 1928. He remained in European academia, studying with Wolfgang Pauli in Zürich, Niels Bohr in Copenhagen and Enrico Fermi in Rome before he went back to Leipzig assuming a position as privatdozent (lecturer). In 1933, immediately after Hitler came to power, he left Germany, emigrating to work at Stanford University in 1934, where he became the first professor for theoretical physics. In 1939, he became a naturalized citizen of the United States. During WW II he worked on atomic energy at Los Alamos National Laboratory, before resigning to join the radar project at Harvard University.

After the war he concentrated on investigations into nuclear induction and nuclear magnetic resonance, which are the underlying principles of MRI [cite journal
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title=Felix Bloch--developer of magnetic resonance imaging
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pmid = 7643644
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] . In 1946 he proposed the Bloch equations which determine the time evolution of nuclear magnetization. He and Edward Mills Purcell were awarded the 1952 Nobel Prize for "their development of new ways and methods for nuclear magnetic precision measurements."- Sohlman, M (Ed.) "Nobel Foundation directory 2003." Vastervik, Sweden: AB CO Ekblad; 2003.] In 1954–1955, he served for one year as the first Director-General of CERN. In 1961, he was made Max Stein Professor of Physics at Stanford University.


* "Physics Today" 1984, 37(3), pp. 115-116.
* "Nature" 1952, 170, pp. 911-912.
* "Nature" 1954, 174, pp. 774-775.
* "McGraw-Hill Modern Men of Science," McGraw-Hill, 1966, vol. 1, pp. 45-46.
* "National Cyclopaedia of American Biography," James T. White & Co., 1921-1984, vol. I, pp. 310-312.


External links

* [http://www.osti.gov/accomplishments/bloch.html Biography and Bibliographic Resources] , from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information, United States Department of Energy
* http://nobelprize.org/physics/laureates/1952/bloch-bio.html
* http://www-sul.stanford.edu/depts/spc/xml/sc0303.xml
* [http://www.aip.org/history/ohilist/4509.html Oral History interview transcript with Felix Bloch 14 May 1964, American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library and Archives]
* [http://www.aip.org/history/ohilist/4510.html Oral History interview transcript with Felix Bloch 15 August 1968, American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library and Archives]

Research resources

*Bloch, F.; Staub, H. [http://www.osti.gov/cgi-bin/rd_accomplishments/display_biblio.cgi?id=ACC0087&numPages=73&fp=N "Fission Spectrum", Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) (through predecessor agency Los Alamos Scientific Lab), United States Department of Energy (through predecessor agency the US Atomic Energy Commission), (August 18, 1943)] .
* [http://www.oac.cdlib.org/findaid/ark:/13030/tf2n39n5nt Felix Bloch Papers, 1931-1987] (33 linear ft.) are housed in the [http://library.stanford.edu/depts/spc/spc.html Department of Special Collections and University Archives] at [http://library.stanford.edu/ Stanford University Libraries]

NAME= Bloch, Felix
DATE OF BIRTH= birth date|1905|10|23|mf=y
PLACE OF BIRTH= Zürich, Switzerland
DATE OF DEATH= death date|1983|9|10|mf=y
PLACE OF DEATH= Zürich, Switzerland

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