Murray Gell-Man

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Scientific Biographies

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Murray Gell-Man

1996 - Nobel Prize in Physics1988 - Listed on the United Nations Environmental Program's Roll of Honor1989 - Ettore Majorana "Science for Peace" prize1994 - Honorary degree in Environmental Studies2005 - Albert Einstein MedalUnknown - Honorary degress from Yale, Columbia, the University of Chicago, Cambridge, and Oxford

Murray Gell-Man(1929-)

Murray Gell-Man

Murray Gell man is a very famous and important person in the history of science and physics. He is currently a Distinguished Fellow at the Santa Fe Institute as well as the Robert Andrews Millikan Professor Emeritus at the California Institute of Technology. At the age of 15, he recieved a scholarship to Yale after graduating from the Columbia Grammar and Preparatory School as class valedictorian. He acquired his Ph.D. in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology at age 21. In 1955, Gell-Mann moved to the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and within a year was appointed full professor. It wasn't long until he soon discovered the "quark".

Murray's book, The Quark Jaguar: Adventures in the Simple and the Complex, published in 1994, discusses Murray's personal ideas of simplicity and complexity. It also talks about his concern with the concepts of regularity and randomness.


Major Awards

The Quark

How He Did It

Extrapolating from the rest of the eightfold pattern, which is classifying the known particles in the atom by their electrical charge and "strangeness" number, Gell-Mann estimated the charge, strangeness, and mass of an as yet unobserved particle, one of which was named "Omega-minus." In 1964, particle researchers found a particle corresponding almost exactly to Gell-Mann's description. Gell-Mann's theory had then been validated.

1929 - New York Born 1948 - Studied in Connecticut 1951- Studied in Massachusetts1952-1953 - Instructed in Chicago1955 - Living in Sante Fe

What Are Quarks?

Murray's Book

A quark is a fast moving point of energy. Every proton and neutron in a single atom contains three quarks. There are two types of quarks within the neutron and proton: up quarks and down quarks. The up quarks have a positive charge of 2/3 and down quarks have a negative charge of 1/3. The charge of the quarks makes up the electrical charge of the nucleus, thus evening out between positive and negative. Protons contain two up quarks and one down quark, while neutrons contain two down quarks and one up quark, as shown in the diagram above and to the right.

Murray Gell-Mann. (n.d.). Retrieved November 16, 2015, from Gell-Mann Murray Gell-Mann. (n.d.). Retrieved November 16, 2015, from Murray Gell-Mann - Biographical. (n.d.). Retrieved November 16, 2015, from Murray Gell-Mann Biography. (n.d.). Retrieved November 16, 2015, from


About Murray

FUN FACTMurray is now 86 years old. He's so young!

FUN FACTAnother scientist named George Zwieg also independently discovered the quark.


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