Remember- Satyendra Nath Bose

Do you know Satyendra Nath Bose? Now he isn’t connected to Subhash Chandra Bose. My instinct tells me that 9 out of 10 Indians wont be able to identify this true jewel of our country. It’s a pity that our countrymen have so comfortably forgotten so many of ours brethren whom the world still remembers. S.N.Bose happens to be one among them. His greatness and importance of his work can just be understood that most of his work was done along with Einstein.

Born in Kolkata, Bose attended a Presidency college where he was throughout a topper. In initial days, he got the post of lecturer in Physics at University of Calcutta. Then he found the Dacca University (Dhaka…these days… yeah…that part was a part of India those days)

In 1924 Bose wrote a paper deriving Planck’s quantum radiation law without any reference to classical physics. After initial setbacks to his efforts to publish, he sent the article directly to Albert Einstein in Germany. Einstein, recognizing the importance of the paper, translated it into German himself and submitted it on Bose’s behalf to the prestigious Zeitschrift für Physik. As a result of this recognition, Bose was able to leave India for the first time and spent two years in Europe, during which he worked with Louis de Broglie, Marie Curie, and Einstein.

It is said that Bose had taken Albert Einstein as his Guru. After working on the theory proposed by Bose, Einstein extended it to atoms also. And finally they were able to propose a theory for the specific properties of objects at temperature close to Absolute Zero. This was known as Bose Einstein Condensate. A Bose Einstein Condensate is a dense collection of Bosons. Bosons are named after S.N. Bose only. The physics fraternity has made the name of Bose immortal by naming the particle as Bosons. Its time we Indians too do something to honor him.

Even after doing such great work, Bose never received a Nobel prize. His theory of the presence of Bose Einstein Condensate was finally realized as late as 1995 by Eric Cornell and Carl Wieman in 1995 at the University of Colorado at Boulder NIST-JILA lab, using a gas of rubidium atoms. Eric Cornell, Carl Wieman and Wolfgang Ketterle at MIT were awarded the 2001 Nobel Prize in Physics.

An anecdote:

Once the great scientist, Niels Bohr, was delivering a lecture. Bose presided. At one stage the lecturer had some difficulty in explaining a point. He had been writing on the blackboard; he stopped and, turning to Bose, said, “Can Professor Bose help me?” All the while Satyendranath had been sitting with his eyes shut. The audience could not help smiling at Professor Bohr’s words. But to their great surprise, Bose opened his eyes; in an instant he solved the lecturer’s difficulty. Then he sat down and once again closed his eyes

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15 Responses

  1. that was pretty informative abhi…thnx for posting it!!!

    i was abt to mention how the BOSONS name evolved if u would have not mentioned it here!!!

    but great work…n its high time ..the world should recognize this genius’ work rather accolading his thesis followers….

  2. Nice post Abhi.

  3. We need more such posts. Remembering the things we read (more appropriately, told) in class 11th-12th by our teachers. 🙂

  4. yo

  5. yes

  6. 🙂 !!! I did not close my eyes even for a minute 😛 !!!

    On a serious note, It is one of those must-have in our lessons of life. Ability to recognize and publicise the unsung heroes 🙂

  7. Superb!! 🙂

    I’ve heard of the anecdote.. But did not know this much about Bose! Thanks abhi 🙂

  8. Good one Abhi. Seriously I didnot know that Bosons named particles ever exist. I feel very elated to know about Satyendra Nath Bose.

  9. Great article, i

    hope can know much information About it!

  10. The greatest science experiment ever is now going at LHC in CERN,switzerland.It’s aim is the verification of existence of Higgs Boson.Bose’s name will forever remain in physics as the only type of physical particles are Bosons with integer spin(which obeys Bose-Einstein statistics) and Fermions with half integral spin(which obey Fermi-Dirac statistics.Here is an additional information on Bose which I happened to find accidentally on wikipedia page on Lev Landau-most mathematically rigorous physicist ever)
    Landau’s List

    Landau kept a list of names of physicists which he ranked on a logarithmic scale of productivity ranging from 0 to 5. The highest ranking, 0.5, was assigned to Albert Einstein. A rank of 1 was awarded to “historical giants” Isaac Newton, Satyendra Nath Bose, Eugene Wigner, and the founding fathers of quantum mechanics, Niels Bohr, Werner Heisenberg, Paul Dirac and Erwin Schrödinger. Landau ranked himself as a 2.5 but later promoted himself to a 2. David Mermin, writing about Landau, referred to the scale, and ranked himself in the fourth division, in the article My Life with Landau: Homage of a 4.5 to a 2.[6][7]

    People like Subhash Chandra Bose,Gandhi or Nehru who were mere politicians with no solid contribution scientific or human progress will be forgotten soon.Bose is immortal in the field of physics.

  11. @Rahul Aggarwal
    Boson and Bose-Einstein statistics are ubiquitous in any physics literature and the work of a physicist and any one who knows physics.

  12. from quantum to hep everywhere he belongs
    god particle-higgs boson
    in string theory-bosnic string.
    fact of the matter is nobody from east has made such amajor contribution in physics-but not even nominated for nobel prize.
    but then what about his professor in presidency college-the greatest scientist from east and one of the all time great-should be in top 25-jc bose.both these men did not make any try to communicate with western scientist.brilliant in talent but poor in communication-result two of the genuine nobel prize missw.and when i see wiki page nobel prize controversy-and in physics category the biggest missing names and only 3 of their pictureres-the greatest inventor tesla,sn bose,and tesla’s nemesis edison.but other two did not win for feaud between themselves but sn bose-a victim of western arrogance and lack of recognising ability of the then indian physics community.mn saha was nominated 4 times and he also deserved it(no nobel in astrophysics till 1967)but sn bose should become the winner with atleast 2 nominations.and his mentor jc bose did not event patent for the coherer-otherwise 1909 nobel should have gone with him.

  13. from quantum to hep everywhere he belongs
    god particle-higgs boson
    in string theory-bosnic string.
    fact of the matter is nobody from east has made such amajor contribution in physics-but not even nominated for nobel prize.
    but then what about his professor in presidency college-the greatest scientist from east and one of the all time great-should be in top 25-jc bose.both these men did not make any try to communicate with western scientist.brilliant in talent but poor in communication-result two of the genuine nobel prize missw.and when i see wiki page nobel prize controversy-and in physics category the biggest missing names and only 3 of their pictureres-the greatest inventor tesla,sn bose,and tesla’s nemesis edison.but other two did not win for feaud between themselves but sn bose-a victim of western arrogance and lack of recognising ability of the then indian physics community.mn saha was nominated 4 times and he also deserved it(no nobel in astrophysics till 1967)but sn bose should become the winner with atleast 2 nominations.and his mentor jc bose did not event patent for the coherer-otherwise 1909 nobel should have gone with him.and Abhi,apart from bengal more than 99 percent people dont even know his name-but they do know some movie jokers,stupid politicians and their near and dear ones.how many of us currently know about ecg sudarshan or ashok sen?

  14. OMG! It’s like you understand my mind! You seem to know so much about this, just like you wrote the book in it or something. I think that you could do with some pics to drive the message home a bit, besides that, this is great blog. A outstanding read. I’l

  15. Thnkx so much for this! I have not been this thrilled by a post for a long time! You have got it, whatever that means in blogging. Well, You are definitely someone that has something to say that people need to hear. Keep up the great work. Keep on inspirin

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