Friday, 29 April 2016

New Fellows for 2016

Today the Royal Society announced the appointment of its 2016 intake of Fellows (who don't have to be fellows).  The announcement is here.  I can't claim to be familiar with many of them, but for the topic of this blog, it's noteworthy that the nuclear engineer Sue Ion is now (Dame) Sue Ion FRS.  A few years ago she was tasked with writing a report about the state of nuclear science in the UK and I think she did a good job in highlighting the parlous state of the support given by the funding councils to nuclear physics in particular (I blogged about it back in 2010)  So, congratulations Sue, along with the other 49 new Fellows.  That's Sue in the picture associated with this post, courtesy of the Royal Society website.

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Sir Denys Wilkinson FRS 1922–2016

I heard the news yesterday that Sir Denys Wilkinson died on 22nd April 2016, aged 93.  I can't (since I'm not qualified to) give much of a general obituary here.  They will presumably appear elsewhere in due course, written by those that knew him personally.  Though I met him once or twice at conferences when I was a graduate student, I know Denys more as one of the big names in UK nuclear physics, as well as through his rising up the ranks of research and higher education administration.  He was vice-chancellor of the University of Sussex between 1976 and 1987.  Preceding that, he was professor at the University of Oxford, and the building that used to be called the Nuclear and Particle Physics building during my time there is now called the Denys Wilkinson Building.  

Though I don't suppose he was very active at the Royal Society in recent years, he was a Fellow there, and one of the last remaining fellows whose science background was in nuclear physics.  

Friday, 8 April 2016

Spot The Difference #6

I wonder if readers have ever noticed the similarity between University of Surrey physicist Jim Al-Khalili and Holby City physician Art Malik?


Thursday, 7 April 2016

The kids here still respect the college dean

A friend of mine posted a video of Merle Haggard singing Okie From Muskogee yesterday, on Twitter.  I like the song, and I even once sang it at karaoke when an undergraduate, as I remember.  Only later did I realise that the Twitter post was occasioned by Merle Haggard's death.  Great song, Merle.  RIP.