Malcolm Longair

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Malcolm Longair

Malcolm Longair (8750955675).jpg
Malcolm Longair in 2013 at the James Webb Space Telescope Advisory Committee (JSTAC), held at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) in Baltimore. Portrait by Mark McCaughrean of the European Space Agency
Malcolm Sim Longair

(1941-05-18) 18 May 1941 (age 80)[1]
Dundee, Scotland
EducationMorgan Academy
Alma mater
(m. 1975)
AwardsBritannica Award (1986)[1]
Scientific career
FieldsNatural philosophy
ThesisThe evolution of radio galaxies (1967)
Doctoral advisorMartin Ryle[2]
Doctoral students

Malcolm Sim Longair CBE FRS FRSE[5] (born 18 May 1941)[1] is a British physicist. From 1991 to 2008 he was the Jacksonian Professor of Natural Philosophy in the Cavendish Laboratory at the University of Cambridge.[6][7][8][9] Since 2016 he has been editor-in-chief of the Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society.[10]


He was born on 18 May 1941,[11] and educated at Morgan Academy, Dundee, Scotland.[1] He graduated in Electronic Physics from Queen's College, Dundee, which later became the University of Dundee, but was then part of the University of St Andrews, in 1963. He became a research student in the Radio Astronomy Group of the Cavendish Laboratory, Cambridge, where he completed his PhD in 1967[12] supervised by Martin Ryle.[2]

Career and research[edit]

From 1968 to 1969, he was a Royal Society Exchange Visitor to the Lebedev Institute of the USSR Academy of Sciences, where he worked with Vitaly Ginzburg and Yakov Zeldovich.

He held a Fellowship of the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 from 1966 to 1968 and was a Fellow of Clare Hall, Cambridge from 1967 to 1980. He has held visiting professorships at the California Institute of Technology (1972), the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton (1978), the Harvard–Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (1990) and the Space Telescope Science Institute (1997). From 1980 to 1990, he held the joint posts of Astronomer Royal for Scotland, Regius Professor of Astronomy of the University of Edinburgh and Director of the Royal Observatory, Edinburgh. He is a Professorial Fellow and Vice-President of Clare Hall, Cambridge. He was Deputy Head of the Cavendish Laboratory with special responsibility for the teaching of physics from 1991 to 1997, and Head of the Cavendish Laboratory from 1997 to 2005.

Longair's primary research interests are in the fields of high-energy astrophysics and astrophysical cosmology. He has written eight books and many articles on this work. His most recent publication is the second edition of his Theoretical Concepts in Physics, released in December 2003. His other interests include music, mountain walking (completing the Munros in 2011), art, architecture and golf. As of 2017 he is the editor-in-chief of the Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society[10] and has authored or co-authored biographies of John E. Baldwin,[13] Vitaly Ginzburg,[14] Brian Pippard,[15] Geoffrey Burbidge[16] and David J. C. MacKay.[17]

Selected publications[edit]

  • High Energy Astrophysics: Volume 1, Particles, Photons and their Detection (3rd ed.). Cambridge University Press. 2011. ISBN 0521756189. 2nd: pbk, 1992, 440pp., ISBN 0521387736
  • The Cosmic Century: A History of Astrophysics and Cosmology. Cambridge University Press. 2006. ISBN 0521474361.
  • High Energy Astrophysics: Volume 2, Stars, the Galaxy and the Interstellar Medium (2nd ed.). Cambridge University Press. 1994. ISBN 0521435846.
  • Theoretical Concepts in Physics: An Alternative View of Theoretical Reasoning in Physics. Cambridge University Press. 1984. ISBN 0521255503. revised and enlarged 2nd edition: 2003, 588pp., ISBN 0521821266
  • Our Evolving Universe (2nd ed.). Cambridge University Press. 1996. ISBN 0521550912.
  • Maxwell's Enduring Legacy: A Scientific History of the Cavendish Laboratory. Cambridge University Press. 2016. ISBN 9781107083691.

As of 2014 he had published 298 papers.[8][19]

During his career he supervised numerous PhD students including Jim Dunlop,[3] Stephen Gull,[2] Simon Lilly[4] and John Peacock.[2]

Awards and honours[edit]

Longair has received numerous awards, including:


  1. ^ a b c d e Anon (2017) "Longair, Prof. Malcolm Sim". Who's Who. (online Oxford University Press ed.). A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc. (subscription or UK public library membership required) doi:10.1093/ww/9780199540884.013.24899 (subscription required)
  2. ^ a b c d e f Malcolm Longair at the Mathematics Genealogy Project
  3. ^ a b Dunlop, James Scott (1987). The high-redshift evolution of radio galaxies and quasars (PhD thesis). University of Edinburgh. OCLC 22336169. EThOS
  4. ^ a b Lilly, Simon (1983). Evolution of radio galaxies (PhD thesis). University of Edinburgh. EThOS
  5. ^ a b Anon (2004). "Professor Malcolm Longair CBE FRS". London: Royal Society. Archived from the original on 17 November 2015. One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from the website where:

    "All text published under the heading 'Biography' on Fellow profile pages is available under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License." --"Royal Society Terms, conditions and policies". Archived from the original on 25 September 2015. Retrieved 9 March 2016.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)

  6. ^ Malcolm Longair at IMDb
  7. ^ Hughes, David H.; Serjeant, Stephen; Dunlop, James; Rowan-Robinson, Michael; Blain, Andrew; Mann, Robert G.; Ivison, Rob; Peacock, John; Efstathiou, Andreas; Gear, Walter; Oliver, Seb; Lawrence, Andy; Longair, Malcolm; Goldschmidt, Pippa; Jenness, Tim (1998). "High-redshift star formation in the Hubble Deep Field revealed by a submillimetre-wavelength survey". Nature. 394 (6690): 241–247. arXiv:astro-ph/9806297. Bibcode:1998Natur.394..241H. doi:10.1038/28328.
  8. ^ a b Malcolm Longair publications indexed by the Scopus bibliographic database. (subscription required)
  9. ^ "Emeritus Jacksonian Professor of Natural Philosophy". Archived from the original on 4 June 2016.
  10. ^ a b Longair, Malcolm (2017). "Editorial". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 63: 1–6. doi:10.1098/rsbm.2017.0030. ISSN 0080-4606.
  11. ^ "Birthday's today". The Telegraph. London. 18 May 2011. Archived from the original on 11 June 2014. Retrieved 16 May 2014. Prof M.S. Longair, astronomer, 70
  12. ^ Longair, Malcolm Sim (1967). The evolution of radio galaxies (PhD thesis). University of Cambridge. OCLC 657635513.
  13. ^ Longair, M. S. (2011). "John Evan Baldwin. 6 December 1931 -- 7 December 2010". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. doi:10.1098/rsbm.2011.0011.
  14. ^ Longair, M. S. (2011). "Vitaly Lazarevich Ginzburg. 4 October 1916 – 8 November 2009". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 57: 129–146. doi:10.1098/rsbm.2011.0002.
  15. ^ Longair, M. S.; Waldram, J. R. (2009). "Sir Alfred Brian Pippard. 7 September 1920 -- 21 September 2008". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 55: 201–220. doi:10.1098/rsbm.2009.0014.
  16. ^ Longair, Malcolm; Rees, Martin (2017). "Geoffrey Ronald Burbidge. 24 September 1925 – 26 January 2010". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. doi:10.1098/rsbm.2017.0002. ISSN 0080-4606.
  17. ^ Longair, Malcolm; Cates, Michael (2017). "Sir David John Cameron MacKay FRS. 22 April 1967 – 14 April 2016". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. doi:10.1098/rsbm.2017.0013. ISSN 0080-4606.
  18. ^ "Malcolm Longair" (PDF). ISAPP2012PARIS : International School on AstroParticle Physics. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 May 2014. Retrieved 20 May 2014.
  19. ^ Longair, Malcolm S. "List of Publications" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 May 2014. Retrieved 19 May 2014.
  20. ^ "Selby Fellowship". Archived from the original on 1 January 2017.