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Pontifical Academy of Sciences

PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATION

Founded in 1603 as Accademia de Lincei (Academy of Lynxes), named for the animal believed to have exceptional vision. Charter members included Galileo Galilei, but regular meetings were discouraged during and after the Inquisition, and the Academy existed as only a library until the late 18th century. Thrived in the early 19th century until banned in 1840 by Pope Gregory XVI, then restored by Pope Pius IX in 1847 as the Pontifical Academy of New Lynxes. Renamed Pontifical Academy of Sciences in 1936, by order of Pope Pius XI. Members are appointed by the Pope, but need not be Catholic.

Location:
Rome, Italy

Founding Date:
1603

NameOccupationBirthDeathKnown for
Christian Anfinsen
Chemist
26-Mar-1916 14-May-1995 Protein structure and folding
Edward Victor Appleton
Physicist
6-Sep-1892 21-Apr-1965 Ionosphere, shortwave radio
Werner Arber
Scientist
3-Jun-1929   Restriction enzymes (DNA cleavage)
David Baltimore
Biologist
7-Mar-1938   Co-Discoverer, reverse transcriptase
Gary S. Becker
Economist
2-Dec-1930   Human Capital
Pope Benedict XVI
Religion
16-Apr-1927   Roman Catholic Pontiff
Paul Berg
Chemist
30-Jun-1926   Pioneer in recombinant DNA
Sune K. Bergström
Scientist
10-Jan-1916 15-Aug-2004 Prostaglandins
George David Birkhoff
Mathematician
21-Mar-1884 12-Nov-1944 Modern theory of dynamical systems
Günter Blobel
Scientist
21-May-1936   Protein signaling in cells
Aage N. Bohr
Physicist
19-Jun-1922 8-Sep-2009 Determined shapes of nuclei
Niels Bohr
Physicist
7-Oct-1885 18-Nov-1962 Father of Quantum Theory
Alexis Carrel
Doctor
28-Jun-1873 5-Nov-1944 Sutured blood vessels
James Chadwick
Physicist
20-Oct-1891 24-Jul-1974 Discovered the neutron
Claude Cohen-Tannoudji
Physicist
1-Apr-1933   Trapped atoms with laser light
Paul J. Crutzen
Physicist
3-Dec-1933   Ozone depletion
Peter Debye
Physicist
24-Mar-1884 2-Nov-1966 Studied molecular structure, dipoles
Paul Dirac
Physicist
8-Aug-1902 20-Oct-1984 The Principles of Quantum Mechanics
Christian de Duve
Scientist
2-Oct-1917   Microstructure of the cell
John Eccles
Scientist
27-Jan-1903 2-May-1997 Membrane potential of nerves
Manfred Eigen
Physicist
9-May-1927   Studied fast chemical reactions
Alexander Fleming
Scientist
6-Aug-1881 11-Mar-1955 Discovered penicillin
Kenichi Fukui
Chemist
4-Oct-1918 9-Jan-1998 Frontier orbitals
Galileo Galilei
Astronomer
15-Feb-1564 8-Jan-1642 Copernican observational astronomer
Otto Hahn
Chemist
8-Mar-1879 28-Jul-1968 Demonstrated fission
Stephen Hawking
Physicist
8-Jan-1942   Wheelchair-bound physicist
Werner Heisenberg
Physicist
5-Dec-1901 1-Feb-1976 Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle
Gerhard Herzberg
Physicist
25-Dec-1904 3-Mar-1999 Molecular spectroscopy
Victor Francis Hess
Physicist
24-Jun-1883 17-Dec-1964 Proved cosmic origin of radiation
George de Hevesy
Chemist
1-Aug-1885 5-Jul-1966 Radioisotope researcher
Raymond Hide
Physicist
17-May-1929   Earth's rotation
Sir Cyril Hinshelwood
Chemist
19-Jun-1897 9-Oct-1967 The Kinetics of Chemical Change
H. Gobind Khorana
Scientist
9-Jan-1922 9-Nov-2011 RNA's role in protein synthesis
Klaus von Klitzing
Physicist
28-Jun-1943   Quantization of resistance
Max von Laue
Physicist
9-Oct-1879 23-Apr-1960 X-ray crystallography
Joshua Lederberg
Biologist
23-May-1925 2-Feb-2008 Genetic properties of bacteria
Tsung-Dao Lee
Physicist
25-Nov-1926   Violations of parity law
Yuan T. Lee
Chemist
29-Nov-1936   Crossed molecular beam experiments
Jean-Marie Lehn
Chemist
30-Sep-1939   Synthesis of molecules
Luis Leloir
Chemist
6-Sep-1906 2-Dec-1987 Conversion of carbohydrates
Rita Levi-Montalcini
Scientist
22-Apr-1909   Nerve and skin cell growth factors
Guglielmo Marconi
Scientist
25-Apr-1874 20-Jul-1937 Inventor of radio
Mario J. Molina
Chemist
19-Mar-1943   Ozone depletion
William W. Morgan
Astronomer
3-Jan-1906 21-Jun-1994 Spiral arms of the Milky Way Galaxy
Rudolf Mössbauer
Physicist
31-Jan-1929 14-Sep-2011 Discovered Mössbauer effect
Marshall W. Nirenberg
Scientist
10-Apr-1927 15-Jan-2010 RNA's role in protein synthesis
Ryoji Noyori
Chemist
3-Sep-1938   Chiral catalysts
George E. Palade
Scientist
19-Nov-1912 7-Oct-2008 Microstructure of the cell
Max F. Perutz
Chemist
19-May-1914 6-Feb-2002 X-Ray analysis of hemoglobin
William D. Phillips
Physicist
5-Nov-1948   Trapped atoms with laser light
Max Planck
Physicist
23-Apr-1858 4-Oct-1947 Originator of quantum theory
John C. Polanyi
Chemist
23-Jan-1929   Infrared chemiluminescence
George Porter
Chemist
6-Dec-1920 31-Aug-2002 Rapid chemical and biological processes
C. N. R. Rao
Chemist
30-Jun-1934   Chemistry of superconductivity
Martin Rees
Astronomer
23-Jun-1942   President of the Royal Society
Carlo Rubbia
Physicist
31-Mar-1934   Co-Discovered W and Z particles
Vera Rubin
Astronomer
23-Jul-1928   Structure of galaxies
Ernest Rutherford
Physicist
30-Aug-1871 19-Oct-1937 Father of nuclear physics
Abdus Salam
Physicist
29-Jan-1926 21-Nov-1996 Electroweak Theory
Allan R. Sandage
Astronomer
18-Jun-1926 13-Nov-2010 Quasars and Hubble-Sandage variable stars
Erwin Schrödinger
Physicist
12-Aug-1887 4-Jan-1961 Schrödinger's wave equation
Kai M. Siegbahn
Physicist
20-Apr-1918 20-Jul-2007 Electron spectroscopy
Charles H. Townes
Physicist
28-Jul-1915   Invention of the maser and laser
Artturi Virtanen
Chemist
15-Jan-1895 11-Nov-1973 AIV method of fodder preservation
Edward Witten
Physicist
26-Aug-1951   String theorist at Princeton
Chen Ning Yang
Physicist
1-Oct-1922   Particle physicist
Hideki Yukawa
Physicist
23-Jan-1907 8-Sep-1981 Predicted existence of mesons
Ahmed H. Zewail
Chemist
26-Feb-1946   Femtochemistry


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