UC Berkeley News


Letter to the Editor

11 October 2006

On page 2 of the Oct. 5 Berkeleyan you depicted eight Berkeley physicists who have won or shared the Nobel Prize in physics. There are, in fact, nine physicists among the campus's Nobelists, for among the other laureates named (but not pictured) is Ed McMillan, very much a physicist, who happened (like Lord Rutherford) to win the Nobel Prize in chemistry. In McMillan's case the prize was awarded for his discovery of the element neptunium through his work in nuclear bombardment of uranium. McMillan, who succeeded Ernest Lawrence as director of the Radiation Laboratory (now Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory), is perhaps best-known as a physicist for his discovery of the principle of phase stability in particle accelerators called synchrotrons, a principle independently suggested by the Soviet physicist V. I. Veksler.

J.D. Jackson
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

We erred in stating "Of Berkeley's 20 Nobel laureates, eight have been physicists." We ought to have said that eight of the 20 Nobels awarded to former or current Berkeley faculty were for physics.