George Gamow Biography
Birthday: March 4, 1904 (Pisces)
Born In: Odessa
George Gamow was a Russian theoretical physicist and cosmologist, perhaps best known for his contributions to George Lemaître's theory of the Big Bang. Other contributions that Gamow made to the sciences included theoretical explanations of alpha decay based on quantum tunneling. He also worked in molecular genetics and on questions of cosmology including stellar nucleosynthesis, radioactive decay, the liquid drop model, and star formation. Aside from his most notable contributions within the scientific community, Gamow reached a broader audience through his teaching and writing. Midway through his career, he began devoting himself increasingly to teaching. As a teacher and as a researcher, Gamow was affiliated with various institutions of higher learning in the United States and Europe. Among these, he worked at the University of Göttingen, the Niels Bohr Institute, Cavendish Laboratory, George Washington University, the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Colorado Boulder. In addition, he wrote multiple popular science books. Of Gamow’s popular science works, several of them formed a long-running series, which he wrote between 1939 and 1967. Even 50 years after their initial publication, some of his popular science books remain in print, an unusual accomplishment for science writing of any kind, popular or technical.