Pierre Curie Biography
(Nobel Laureate in Physics)
Birthday: May 15, 1859 (Taurus)
Born In: Paris, France
Pierre Curie was a French physicist, one of the pioneers in radioactivity. He and his wife, Marie Curie, along with Henri Becquerel, were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1903, for their research on radiation. Curie’s early career was dedicated to his doctoral research on magnetism. He is credited with designing and perfecting an extremely sensitive torsion balance for measuring magnetic coefficients. He also proposed Curie’s Law and the Curie Dissymmetry Principle. The son of a doctor, Pierre was a brilliant student. He showed a strong aptitude for mathematics and geometry, obtaining his Mathematics degree at the age of 16 and completing the equivalent of a higher degree by 18. Working with his brother he discovered piezoelectricity, demonstrating that an electric potential could be generated by compressing crystals. They invented the Piezoelectric Quartz Electrometer in order to aid their work. He married fellow physicist, Marie Sklodowska (popularly known as Marie Curie), and the two worked towards isolating polonium and radium. Together they pioneered in the study of radioactivity—a term that the husband wife duo coined. He also made breakthrough discoveries in the research of radioactive materials and was among the first scientists to discover nuclear energy. The life of this brilliant scientist was tragically cut short by a horse-drawn cart accident.