9th Grade Biology7 December 2017Sir Lawrence BraggSir Lawrence Bragg was born March 31, 1890 in Adelaide, South Australia and died July1, 1971 in England. Sir Lawrence moved to England to attend Trinity College, Cambridge.Before he went to Cambridge he studied some chemistry and ended up taking physics for thefirst time at Cambridge. Lawrence became fascinated with the diffraction of X-rays after hisfather talked to him about a book written by German physicist, Max von Laue. His booked wasabout how X-rays could be diffracted by putting them through crystals. Bragg had disagreed withMax von Laue’s claims made in his book, so he started a series of experiments and from this hepublished his own equation called the Bragg equation. This equation shows the most efficientangle at which X-rays are diffracted by a crystal when the distance between the X-ray waves andthe crystal atoms are known. Using this equation Bragg showed that ,in rock salt, sodium atomsand chlorine atoms alternate. Bragg’s father was also a scientists and he created a machine thatmeasures the wavelengths of X-rays called the X-ray spectrometer. Bragg and his fathercollaborated and used their findings to discover the atomic arrangement of a diamond. Bragg andhis father were awarded the Nobel Prize for physics in 1915. After winning the Nobel Prize, hewas and still is the youngest person to receive that prestigious award. Bragg served in World WarI, but afterwards he became a professor of physics at the Victoria University of Manchester.There he built his first research school where people could study the metals, alloys, and silicates.Later, in 1938, Bragg became the director of the Cavendish Laboratory. In spite of opposingopinions, Bragg started a large crystallography program. Many people at the time felt that Braggshould not have started the program at Cavendish because that laboratory had previously beenused for nuclear physics and many people wanted that study to continue. Bragg was in charge ofthe Cavendish Laboratory during World War II. Bragg also worked with some of the governmentgroups to and was knighted in 1941 for all of his hard work and great services to the country.After receiving funding from the Medical Research Council, Bragg established an area oflearning in the laboratory where people would study the molecular structure of biologicalsystems. Later, scientists Francis Crick, whom Bragg did not get along with, and James Watsoncame and studied and later discovered the molecular structure of DNA. These two scientistdetermined that DNA was a double helical strand. Bragg later left the Cavendish Laboratory togo fix the Royal Institution which had be previously been left in the hands of an irresponsiblescientist who had left the laboratory in poor condition. Bragg ended up successful fixing thelaboratory.e not discovered thediffraction of X-rays then people would have a hard time studying the genetic makeup ofe

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