David Shoenberg

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David Shoenberg
Born(1911-01-04)4 January 1911
Died10 March 2004(2004-03-10) (aged 93)
Cambridge, England [1]
Alma materTrinity College, Cambridge
Spouse(s)Catherine Felicitee Fischmann
AwardsHughes Medal (1995)
Scientific career
ThesisThe magnetic properties of bismuth (1936)
Doctoral advisorPyotr Kapitza[2]
Doctoral studentsJoe Vinen[3]

David Shoenberg, MBE FRS,[4] (4 January 1911 – 10 March 2004) was a British physicist.

David Shoenberg was born in 1911, the son of Isaac Shoenberg. Isaac came to Britain and acquired British nationality, but then returned to Russia where David was born. David was, however, a British citizen, and was brought to Britain as a boy. He was educated at Latymer Upper School, Hammersmith and Trinity College, Cambridge, where he took his doctorate in 1935.[5]

He began his research into aspects of low-temperature physics and magnetism at the Mond Laboratory at Cambridge. After the war he played a leading role in re-establishing low-temperature physics at Cambridge, becoming head of the Mond Laboratory in 1947. He remained in this post until 1973. He was Professor of Physics, Cambridge University and Head of Low Temperature Physics Group, Cavendish Laboratory, 1973–78, then Professor Emeritus. He was also a Life Fellow of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge.

He received the MBE in 1944. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1953 and was awarded their Hughes Medal in 1995 "for his work on the electronic structure of solids, in particular by exploiting low temperature techniques, particularly the De Haas Van Alphen effect".[6]

He won the Fritz London Memorial Prize for Low-Temperature Physics in 1964.

He had married Catherine Felicitee Fischmann in 1940; they had a son and two daughters.


  1. ^ "Professor David Shoenberg". The Independent. 16 March 2004. Retrieved 4 June 2018.
  2. ^ Chambers, R. G. (2004). "Obituary: David Shoenberg (1911–2004)". Nature. 428 (6983): 613. Bibcode:2004Natur.428..613C. doi:10.1038/428613a. PMID 15071584.
  3. ^ Gough, C. E. (1999). "W F Vinen - a celebration". Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter. 11 (40): 7669. Bibcode:1999JPCM...11.7669G. doi:10.1088/0953-8984/11/40/001.
  4. ^ Pippard, S. B. (2005). "David Shoenberg. 4 January 1911 -- 10 March 2004: Elected F.R.S. 1953". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 51: 379. doi:10.1098/rsbm.2005.0025.
  5. ^ "Professor David Shoenberg". London: Times Online. 16 March 2004. Retrieved 14 August 2010.
  6. ^ "The Hughes Medal (1902)". The Royal Society. Retrieved 14 August 2010.