The Centennial of Ernest Rutherford Splitting the Atom

  • June 13, 2018, 4:00 pm
  • John Campbell, University of Canterbury, New Zealand
  • Chris Stoughton

Ernest Rutherford was the first person to be awarded a Nobel Prize for research carried out in Canada (1908, Chemistry) and the first person to split the atom (1918). He was at McGill University from 1898 until 1907. It was there that he laid the foundation for his nuclear atom (1911), his splitting the atom using particles from natural radioactivity (1918), and splitting the atom by entirely artificial means through the use of the first linear particle accelerator (1932).

John Campbell is the biographer of Rutherford (Rutherford – Scientist Supreme), the producer of the 3-hour Rutherford documentary, the organizer of the Rutherford Birthplace Project, the initiator of New Zealand’s Ask-A-Scientist program, and runs the website He is retired from the University of Canterbury.