Bruno Pontecorvo #326

July 17, 2015

This week, we're digging into a tale of intrigue that may have changed the course of physics research in the 20th century. We'll spend the hour with Frank Close, Professor of Physics at the University of Oxford and Fellow of Exeter College, Oxford, talking about his book "Half-Life: The Divided Life of Bruno Pontecorvo, Physicist or Spy." We'll learn about Pontecorvo's groundbreaking career in particle physics, his defection to the Soviet Union, and the accusations that he traded nuclear secrets at the height of the Cold War.


  • Frank Close

Guest Bios

Frank Close

Frank Close is professor of theoretical physics at Oxford University, the author of over 200 research papers about quarks and gluons, and of 15 popular books on physics, most recently “The Infinity Puzzle” and “Half-Life: The Divided Life of Bruno Pontecorvo, Physicist or Spy”. Between 1997 and 2000 Frank Close was Head of Communications at CERN. In 2014 he won the Michael Faraday Medal for Science Communication from The Royal Society of London.

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