abstract-pallo – Niels Bohr Archive

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Niels Bohr Archive > Calendar > 2013 > 100 years of the Bohr atom > Programme > abstract-pallo

Gábor Palló, Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Hungary
The Bohr model's early reception in Hungary: Hevesy and Bohr

The Bohr model arrived in Budapest very soon, in November 1913, almost simultaneously with the publication of the last paper of Bohr’s trilogy. This fast reception is not unique as we can learn from Helge Kragh’s study on the British and German case. Hungary, however, did not excel with front line researches in the field of atomic structure. The later famous nuclear physicists like Leo Szilard, Eugene Wigner or Edward Teller were still too young to contribute to the reception of the Bohr model. The main actor of the reception was George Hevesy, Bohr’s friend and colleague. Their close relation explains that Hevesy understood Bohr’s theory in statu nascendi. Besides speaking about the Bohr – Hevesy relationship, the paper tries to provide a picture on the open mindedness of a traditionally thinking peripheral scientific community that faced with disturbing new ideas and gave impetus to young people who became successful some decades later.