Greatest scientists who never won a nobel prize

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  • #1
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At first I thought physicists, but then that would exclude too many for no good reason, but still excludes the scientists who haven't been around since nobel prizes have been given out.
 

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  • #2
russ_watters
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Could we also do greatest discoveries for which no Nobel was awarded...?
 
  • #3
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sure, why not
 
  • #4
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Not really a scientist, but Gandhi comes to mind as one of the greatest peacekeepers who never won a Nobel Peace Prize.
 
  • #5
Astronuc
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Freeman Dyson has not won the Nobel Prize in Physics for his work in quantum field theory.

Three contemporaries - Sin-Itiro Tomonaga, Julian Schwinger, Richard P. Feynman - won the Noble Prize in Physics in 1965 for their work in QFT.
 
  • #6
rhody
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Three contemporaries - Sin-Itiro Tomonaga, Julian Schwinger, Richard P. Feynman - won the Noble Prize in Physics in 1965 for their work in QFT.
Errr, did you mean to say, Quantum Electrodynamics ? (QED) http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/physics/laureates/1965/" [Broken]

I know James Maxwell died in 1879, so that makes him a 19th century physicist, I don't know the rules of how Nobel Prizes are awarded, but if they were to include 19th century physicists, I would imagine he would have been awarded one.
 
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  • #7
Astronuc
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Errr, did you mean to say, Quantum Electrodynamics ? (QED) http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/physics/laureates/1965/" [Broken]
Well I was thinking more generically, but yes specifically Tomonaga, Schwinger and Feynman were recongized for contributions to QED.
 
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  • #8
f95toli
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Well, two examples are Lisa Meitner (who first didn't share the prize because she didn't publish her findings, and later was disqualified because she became a member of the Nobel committee herself) and Henrietta Swan Leavitt (who was considered but died before she could be nominated).

However, remember that you don't get the prize for being a great scientist. The prize is awarded to people who make an important discovery, it is not the same thing.
 
  • #10
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The seminal work done by me, myself, and I.
 
  • #11
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Well, two examples are Lisa Meitner (who first didn't share the prize because she didn't publish her findings, and later was disqualified because she became a member of the Nobel committee herself) and Henrietta Swan Leavitt (who was considered but died before she could be nominated).

However, remember that you don't get the prize for being a great scientist. The prize is awarded to people who make an important discovery, it is not the same thing.
I like how you put things.
 
  • #12
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Al Gore, for inventing the internet.
 
  • #13
lisab
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Al Gore, for inventing the internet.
No, he wouldn't qualify because the internet isn't made of strings...it's a series of tubes.

Besides, he already won a Nobel prize :rolleyes:.
 
  • #14
cronxeh
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No, he wouldn't qualify because the internet isn't made of strings...it's a series of tubes.

Besides, he already won a Nobel prize :rolleyes:.
On that note.. John McCain, for being aware of the Internet
 
  • #15
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Discovery that wasn't awarded by a Nobel Prize........

Special and General Relativity

Ciche for a physics forum, but no one had said it...
 
  • #16
Matterwave
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Einstein's award did say something along the lines of "for contributions in Theoretical physics, and for the law of the Photoelectric effect".

So maybe SR and GR were bundled in there with theoretical physics. Otherwise, Brownian motion was discovered by him too.

Before Nobel, there are many, so I guess this is only for after Nobel?

After Nobel...uh I can only think of the one time Born was snubbed for the 1932 prize. Even though Born had worked jointly with Heisenberg (and Jordan) regarding the matrix formulation of QM, only Heisenberg was given the prize (possibly due to Jordan's connection with the Nazi's). No need to panic, though, since Born got one later for his statistical interpretation of QM.
 
  • #17
Matterwave
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Oh, I know. David Bohm and Yakir Aharonov never got one for the Aharonov-Bohm effect which is quite important in establishing the vector potential A as a "real" object. Bohm specifically deserved a Nobel prize imo for his contributions to Physics, including developing the De-Broglie-Bohm pilot wave formulation of QM.
 
  • #18
ideasrule
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Rosalin Franklin. The structure of DNA couldn't have been discovered without her work on x-ray crystallography, but she died before the year her co-worker was awarded the Nobel prize.
 
  • #19
f95toli
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Bohm specifically deserved a Nobel prize imo for his contributions to Physics, including developing the De-Broglie-Bohm pilot wave formulation of QM.
You can't -according to the rules- be awarded the prize for a theory that hasn't been experimentally verified, this means that you can't get it for working on interpretations of QM, string theory(at least at the moment) etc.
There are several sciencits who can more or less be sure to win the prize if their theories are verified. Higgs will almost certainly get it if the LHC finds his boson.
 
  • #20
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Nikola Tesla , Philo Farnsworth inventer of the TV and the fusor .
 
  • #21
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My vote was/is with Maxwell for EM. Belongs up there with Newton (gravity) and Einstein (gravity again).

I can't even dredge up without google the names of those who first characterized the weak and strong forces. Add them. Fundamental forces would seem like they should qualify...
 
  • #22
Matterwave
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You can't -according to the rules- be awarded the prize for a theory that hasn't been experimentally verified, this means that you can't get it for working on interpretations of QM, string theory(at least at the moment) etc.
There are several sciencits who can more or less be sure to win the prize if their theories are verified. Higgs will almost certainly get it if the LHC finds his boson.
I'll give you that, but I'm sure in Bohm's long repertoire, there's something he should have won the Nobel for (if not the Aharonov-Bohm effect like I mentioned, then something else).
 
  • #23
DrClapeyron
How about Norman Bowen?
 
  • #24
psh, can we consider really old scientists?
Gauss, Newton, Euclid :)
 
  • #25
mheslep
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Freeman Dyson has not won the Nobel Prize in Physics for his work in quantum field theory....
Beat me to it. He's also still an active scientist. Dyson, Dyson, Dyson.
 

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