On 22 August 2022, it is the 109th birthday of the Academician Bruno Pontecorvo, an outstanding scientist, one of the founders of neutrino physics and neutrino astronomy. Bruno Pontecorvo worked at the Laboratory of Nuclear Problems for over forty years.
In his autobiography, the scientist describes first of all his scientific results and achievements whose value is only growing with time. At least five ideas proposed by Bruno Pontecorvo brought the Nobel Prizes to other scientists:
1. The method for detecting nuclear reactor antineutrinos was invented, and this led to the discovery of the neutrino (Nobel Prize awarded in 1995).
2. The idea of experimental discovery of muon neutrinos was proposed (Nobel Prize awarded in 1988).
3. Giant gas amplification in a definite operation mode of proportional counters was observed, which led to the development of a proportional chamber, one of the main modern particle detectors (Nobel Prize awarded in 1992).
4. The radiochemical method for neutrino detection was invented which enabled the discovery of solar neutrinos (Nobel Prize awarded in 2002).
5. Neutrino oscillations were theorized (Nobel Prize awarded in 2015).
The achievement, Bruno Pontecorvo was satisfied most with, was the invention of the neutron logging method. Invented in the 1940s, the method is still used to explore oil-bearing beds.
It was his teaching activity and political views based on the “feeling of fairness cultivated in me by my father” that Bruno Pontecorvo emphasised in his book. He writes about his hobbies: “I played tennis really well and had the first qualification. I was one of the initiators and adherents of diving in Russia. I was keen on water skiing.”
How astonishingly prolific Bruno Pontecorvo was! The video can prove it with fascinating archive photos and recordings. This film was created by the DLNP Group of Scientific Communication and includes a video tour of the Museum-Study of Bruno Pontecorvo located in the main DLNP building.