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Born Sept. 2, 1877, in Eastbourne; died Sept. 22,1956, in Brighton. British radiochemist. Member of the Royal Society of London (1910).
Soddy graduated from Oxford University in 1896. From 1900 until 1902 he worked under E. Rutherford at McGill University in Montreal, and in 1903 and 1904, under W. Ramsay at University College, London. He taught at the University of Glasgow from 1904 to 1914, and he was a professor at the University of Aberdeen from 1914 to 1919 and at Oxford University from 1919 to 1936.
Together with Rutherford, Soddy proposed the theory of radioactive decay, which served as the basis for the modern study of the atom and atomic energy. In 1903, Rutherford and Soddy established that radioactive decay proceeds in accordance with a law describing the rate of a monomolecular reaction. Together with Ramsay, Soddy detected spectroscopically the formation of helium from radon. Attempts to place the numerous radioactive products of the transformation of uranium and thorium in the periodic system of elements of D. I. Mendeleev proved successful with Soddy’s introduction of the concept of isotopes. In 1913, Soddy and K. Fajans, independently of each other, formulated the displacement law, which permitted a prediction of the place in the periodic system of elements that are products of radioactive decay. In 1915, Soddy proved experimentally that radium is formed from uranium. The mineral soddyite (uranium silicate) was named in his honor.
Soddy received the Nobel Prize in chemistry in 1921. He was named a foreign corresponding member of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR in 1924.
WORKSRadio-activity. London, 1904.
Matter and Energy. London .
The Story of Atomic Energy. London, 1949.
Khimiia radioelementov: St. Petersburg, 1913. (Translated from English.)
Radii i stroenie atoma. Moscow . (Translated from English.)