These are the stories of six Indian scientists who made important contributions to the field of science and were nominated for the Nobel Prize.
Here’s the life and legacy of six brilliant Indian scientists who were nominated for the prestigious Nobel Prize throughout the years –
1. Thiruvengadam Rajendram Seshadri
Seshadri was a pioneer in chemistry with his research spanning numerous topics such as work on antimalarial drugs, plant chemistry, flavonoids, lichens, and pigments of cotton flowers. Though nominated for the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1966 for his work on organic compounds, Seshadri did not receive the honour. That same year, the prize was awarded to Robert S. Mulliken for his “fundamental work concerning chemical bonds and the electronic structure of molecules by the molecular orbital method”.
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2. Gopalasamudram Narayanan Ramachandran
He was said to be a remarkably creative individual with an active mind that never relaxed. Ramachandran lived up to this title through his work in molecular biophysics and the study of protein structures. Though nominated for the Nobel Prize in Chemistry by Sir C V Raman, Ramachandran did not receive the honour.
3. Dr Upendranath Brahmachari
The Bengali doctor’s discovery of urea stibamine — a drug with the potential to treat kalaazar with a 90 percent success rate —got him a Nobel Prize nomination twice, once in 1929 and again later in 1942. But he did not win. This did not deter Brahmachari from furthering his research in malaria, leprosy and influenza.
4. Satyendra Nath Bose
The Indian physicist was nominated for the Nobel Prize for his contributions to Bose-Einstein statistics — which helps study a collection of indistinguishable particles. However, despite the value of his work, he did not receive it. It is said that Oskar Klein, an expert on the Nobel Committee did not see his work worthy of a Nobel Prize.
5. Homi Jehangir Bhabha
Though touted as one of the greatest scientists that India has ever seen and nominated for the Nobel Prize five times, Bhabha did not receive the honour. However, his work as the architect of the country’s nuclear energy program got him international recognition as did his contributions to quantum theory and cosmic radiation.
6. Meghnad Saha
Saha was nominated for the Nobel Prize in 1930, 1937, 1939, 1940, 1951 and 1955. His Saha-Langmuir equation, which helps astronomers determine how much the various elements of a star have been ionised, was seen as an integral development in Physics. However, a shortcoming was that the equation was limited to astrophysics. While Saha attempted to publish in the famous Astrophysical Journal his theory of selective radiation pressure that would better explain the equation, he couldn’t due to financial constraints. It is often said that this missed opportunity may have been the reason for the missed Nobel Prize.
Edited by Padmashree Pande
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