(October 7, 1885 – November 18, 1962)
Niels Bohr was one of Ernest Rutherford’s most famous students; and like his erstwhile professor, a prolific researcher. He collaborated with many greats, such as: Joseph J. Thomson, Max Planck, James Chadwick and Werner Heisenberg. He would also mentor more, including: Hendrik Kramers, Lev Landau and Ishrat Usmani. After Rutherford expounded atomic structures with his model, Bohr refined it with Planck’s Quantum Theory. He had observed that Rutherford’s idea left the question of atomic stability unanswered. By applying classical laws, he rectified it. (Those laws enunciated that the electrons orbiting the nucleus will either dissipate energy, spiral down to the nucleus, and engender structural collapse of the atom; or that they could be forced out of position if other charge particles are in close proximity). He also devised solution, which showed that the ratio of energy in the electrons and the frequency of their orbits around the nucleus were equal to Planck’s constant. This led him to suggest that when atoms absorb or dissipate energy, the orbiting electrons migrate to higher or lower energy levels which are depicted as their positional orbits. When he published his findings in 1913, many scientists who were still grappling with quantum theory found it difficult to comprehend. Although his findings were themselves later refined, they were paramount in the establishment of Quantum Mechanics. Niels Bohr was awarded various prizes: both in his lifetime and posthumously. Additional new honors have been added to that: including the 71-kilometer-wide Bohr lunar crater and the 3948 Bohr asteroid.