American Philosophical Society
Member History

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101. Astronomy[X]
1Name:  Dr. Jocelyn Bell Burnell
 Institution:  University of Oxford; Royal Society of Edinburgh; Trinity College Dublin
 Year Elected:  2016
 Class:  1. Mathematical and Physical Sciences
 Subdivision:  101. Astronomy
 Residency:  International
 Living? :   Living
 Birth Date:  1943
Jocelyn Bell Burnell is widely recognized as the individual responsible for the 1967 discovery of pulsars. With skill and perseverance she overcame the skepticism and resistance of her senior colleagues to make one of the most important and dramatic discoveries in 20th century astrophysics. In 2018 her essential role in the discovery was recognized by the Breakthrough Prize Foundation with a Special Breakthrough Prize. Bell Burnell donated the associated prize money to the Institute of Physics to support scholarships for individuals from underrepresented groups. Later in her career she worked in infrared, X-ray and gamma-ray astrophysics. More recently she turned her attention to education including the public understanding of science where according to the Royal Society, her contribution "has been uniquely valuable." The Royal Society web site refers to Jocelyn Bell Burnell as "one of the most influential scientists in the UK." She was elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences in 2018.
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