It is great to see Google honoring Marie Curie’s birthday today on its homepage. They depict her in an impressionistic illustration working at her chemistry bench, so check it out. I just wanted to take a second to remember an amazing woman. Not to mention, last month was the 100th anniversary of her second Nobel prize.
She was the first person to win or share two Nobel prizes. Not to mention, Curie is still one of two people (the other is Linus Pauling) to win a Nobel prize in two different fields, physics and chemistry. The first of her Nobels was in physics and shared with her husband. It was given “in recognition of the extraordinary services they have rendered by their joint researches on the radiation phenomena discovered by Professor Henri Becquerel.” Her second Nobel was given in chemistry “in recognition of her services to the advancement of chemistry by the discovery of the elements radium and polonium, by the isolation of radium and the study of the nature and compounds of this remarkable element.”
Her legacy continues as she still is an example for women in science. There are institutions and universities named after the Curies. One of her daughters, Irène Joliot-Curie, followed in her esteemed footsteps and won a Nobel in chemistry as well. So Happy Birthday Marie Curie, an example to us all!