MARIE Curie was pioneering scientist and recently topped a BBC poll of 100 women who changed the world.
She was willing to toil for hours on mind numbing tasks to succeed but despite her fame found herself vilified in for an affair with a fellow scientist. Here’s what you need to know about her.
When did Marie Curie die?
The scientist was born Marie Sklodowska in Warsaw on 7 November 1867, the daughter of a teacher.
She died on 4 July 1934 from leukaemia, which was caused by exposure to high-energy radiation from her research.
How many times did she win the Nobel prize?
In 1903, Curie became the first woman to win the Nobel Prize and in 1911 she became the first person – and so far the only woman – to two.
After studying in her native Poland, in 1891, she went to Paris to study physics and mathematics at the Sorbonne where she met Pierre Curie, professor of the School of Physics.
They were married in 1895 worked together investigating radioactivity,
Their work built on n the German physicist Wilhelm Roentgen and the French physicist Henri Becquerel.
The Curies announced the discovery of a new chemical element, polonium in July 1898 and at the end of the year announced the discovery of another, radium.
Along with Becquerel, they were awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1903.
But tragedy struck in in 1906 when Pierre was knocked down and killed by a carriage, which left her devastated.
Marie took over his post, becoming the first woman to teach at the Sorbonne.
She devoted herself to continuing the work that they had begun together and received a second Nobel Prize, for Chemistry, in 1911.
The Curie’s research was crucial in the development of x-rays in surgery.
Curie helped to equip ambulances in World War I with x-ray equipment, which she herself drove to the front lines.
MOST READ IN NEWS
She was made head of the International Red Cross’s radiological service and she held training courses for medical orderlies and doctors in x-ray techniques.
Despite her success, Marie faced opposition from male scientists in France and was not allowed to enter the French Academy of Sciences
She never received significant financial benefits from her work.
Her affair with married physicist fellow physicist Paul Langevin in 1910 led to vilification and anti-semitic smears in the French press, despite not being Jewish.
By the late 1920s her health was affected by the exposure to radiation, which finally killed her.
Who were her children?
The Curies’ eldest daughter Irene was herself a scientist and winner of the Nobel Prize.
Like her mother, she received the award jointly with her husband, Frédéric Joliot-Curie, and it was given for their discovery of artificial radioactivity.
Marie Curie’s other daughter Eve worked as a journalist and wrote her mother’s biography.
Note from WSOE.Org : This content has been auto-generated from a syndicated feed.