Happy birthday Marie Curie – MOTHER OF RADIOACTIVITY!

800Px-Maria Skłodowska-Curie Medallion
Happy birthday Marie Curie

Marie Skłodowska–Curie (7 November 1867 – 4 July 1934) was a physicist and chemist. She was a pioneer in the field of radioactivity, the only person honored with Nobel Prizes in two different sciences, and the first female professor at the University of Paris.

Her achievements include the creation of a theory of radioactivity (a term coined by her and Pierre), techniques for isolating radioactive isotopes, and the discovery of two new elements, radium and polonium. It was also under her personal direction that the world’s first studies were conducted into the treatment of neoplasms (“cancers”), using radioactive isotopes.

She named the first new chemical element that she discovered (1898) “polonium” for her native country, and in 1932 she founded a Radium Institute (now the Maria SkÅ‚odowska–Curie Institute of Oncology) in her home town Warsaw, headed by her physician-sister BronisÅ‚awa.

In an unusual decision, Marie Curie intentionally refrained from patenting the radium-isolation process so that the scientific community could do research unhindered.

Since they were unaware of the deleterious effects of radiation exposure attendant on their chronic unprotected work with radioactive substances, Marie and Pierre had no idea what price they were paying for their research.

Makers, will your daughter, niece or grandchild be the next Marie Curie? What can you do to spark their interests? Post in the comments!

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