Cornell to celebrate the life of Hans Bethe Sept. 18

09/14/05

ITHACA, N.Y. -- The world will long remember Hans Bethe -- for his unparalleled contributions to physics, his advocacy for peace and his generosity of spirit.

This Sunday, Sept. 18, Cornell University will hold a celebration of Bethe's life. The event, at 2 p.m. in Statler Hall Auditorium, will include tributes from some of Bethe's closest colleagues and protégés. The public is invited to attend, without charge.

Bethe, who came to Cornell in 1935, was awarded the Nobel Prize for physics in 1967 for explaining the process that powers the stars. He was a key figure in the Manhattan Project, and in the years that followed he was a dedicated advocate of peace and nuclear nonproliferation.

Bethe's scientific work led to the creation of the field of quantum electrodynamics. His activism contributed to the 1963 Limited Test Ban Treaty.

"Hans Bethe participated actively in many different communities: the world of physics, the university faculty, disarmament and national defense policy, science advice to the [U.S.] president," said Dale R. Corson, Cornell University president emeritus and former physics department chair. "In every one of these communities his intellectual impact was enormous. In addition, he was the moralist and the ethicist. He was the community's conscience."

Speakers at Sunday's celebration will include Corson, Cornell President Hunter R. Rawlings, Cornell astrophysicists Edwin Salpeter and Saul Teukolsky, and Institute for Advanced Study physicist Freeman Dyson. A two-DVD set, "Remembering Hans Bethe," will be available without charge after the celebration.

In tribute, a special supplement: "Hans Bethe: A Celebration of His Life and Times," will be included in the Thursday, Sept. 15, issue of the Cornell Chronicle.

Source: Eurekalert & others

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