David Schramm (astrophysicist)

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David Schramm
David Schramm (astrophysicist).jpg
Born October 25, 1945
St. Louis, Missouri
Died December 19, 1997(1997-12-19) (aged 52)
Denver, Colorado
Nationality United States
Fields Astrophysics
Alma mater California Institute of Technology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Known for Dark matter, Big Bang
Notable awards Robert J. Trumpler Award
Lilienfeld Prize (1993)

David Norman Schramm (October 25, 1945 – December 19, 1997) was an American astrophysicist and educator, and one of the world's foremost experts on the Big Bang theory. Schramm was a pioneer in the study of Big Bang nucleosynthesis and its use as a probe of dark matter (both baryonic and non-baryonic) and of neutrinos. He also made important contributions to the study of cosmic rays, supernova explosions, and heavy-element nucleosynthesis.[1][2]

Biography[edit]

David Schramm was born in St. Louis, Missouri and earned his master's degree in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1967.[3] He earned a Ph.D in physics at Caltech in 1971 under Willy Fowler. After a brief time as faculty at the University of Texas at Austin he accepted a professorship at the University of Chicago, where he spent the rest of his career.

Schramm received the Robert J. Trumpler Award of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific in 1974, the Helen B. Warner Prize for Astronomy from the American Astronomical Society in 1978, and he was awarded the Julius Edgar Lilienfeld Prize from the American Physical Society in 1993.

Schramm, an avid private pilot, died on 19 December 1997, when his Swearingen-Fairchild SA-226 crashed near Denver, Colorado.[3][4] He was the sole occupant of the aircraft. The National Transportation Safety Board found the cause to be pilot error. At the time of his death he was Vice President for Research and Louis Block Distinguished Service Professor in the Physical Sciences at the University of Chicago.

Legacy[edit]

The David N. Schramm Award for High Energy Astrophysics Science Journalism was created in his honour in the year 2000 by the High-Energy Astrophysics Division of the American Astronomical Society.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Olinto, Angela V.; Truran, James W.; Turner, Michael S. (July 1998). "Obituary: David Norman Schramm". Physics Today 51 (7): 81–82. Bibcode:1998PhT....51g..81O. doi:10.1063/1.2805880. 
  2. ^ Kolb, Edward W.; Turner, Michael S. (29 January 1998). "Obituary: David N. Schramm (1945–97)". Nature 391: 444. Bibcode:1998Natur.391..444K. doi:10.1038/35044. 
  3. ^ a b "David N. Schramm, 1945-1997". The University of Chicago News Office. December 22, 1997. 
  4. ^ Overbye, Dennis (10 February 1998). "Essay; Remembering David Schramm, Gentle Giant of Cosmology". NY Times. 
  5. ^ "The David N. Schramm Award for High Energy Astrophysics Science Journalism.". "The High-Energy Astrophysics Division of the American Astronomical Society (HEAD/AAS) is proud to announce the creation of a prize named after David N. Schramm to recognize and stimulate distinguished writing on high-energy astrophysics. The prize is established to improve the general public’s understanding of this exciting field of research. The prize is awarded at every meeting of the High Energy Astrophysics Division of the American Astronomical Society."