Particle Physicist "Nephew of Emilio Segre, winner of the 1959 Nobel Prize for the discovery of the antiproton". Born in Florence, Italy in 1938, Gino Segre grew up in New York and Italy. He graduated from Harvard University (A.B., 1959) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Ph.D., 1963). He is now a professor emeritus in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Pennsylvania. He has been a visiting professor at M.I.T and at Oxford University as well as a visiting Fellow at CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research) and the University of California, Berkeley. Author of more than 100 papers in his field, Segre has also written many popular articles and books for the general public. His first book, "A Matter of Degrees: What Temperature Reveals About the Past and Future of Our Species, Planet, and Universe," was published by Viking/Penguin in 2002. He also published "Ordinary Geniuses" (2011) and "Faust in Copenhagen: A Struggle for the Soul of Physics" (2008). Segre has received numerous research awards from foundations and government agencies that include the National Science Foundation, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the John S. Guggenheim Foundation, the John D. Rockefeller Foundation, the Liguria Foundation, and the U.S. Department of Energy. Segre is the winner of the 2008 AIP Science Writing Award in the Scientist category. His award will be presented on March 19, 2009 at the American Physical Society's March Meeting in Pittsburgh. The birth of physics is inextricably tied to the spirit of exploration present in 17th century Florence. Galileo and his disciples formulated the basic methodology of hypothesis and experimentation. They also established the first society formed purely for the purpose of scientific enquiry.
Over the years those long-ago notions have shaped advances in science. The most recent dramatic example, one to which modern Florentine physicists contributed, was the discovery at CERN of the Higgs boson.
Viva lo spirito di Galileo!
November 20, 2012 at 6:30pm
Science World Museum