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Marie Curie

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Leah Spiering

on 30 October 2014

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Transcript of Marie Curie

Who is she?
Marie Curie was a Polish-born French scientist famous for her work on radioactivity.

Marie Curie
Marie Curie
Born Maria Sklodowska on November 7th, 1867, in Warsaw, Poland.
Was the time of industrial development and massive migrations in Poland.
Polish provinces under Prussian government were slowly Germanized.
Several attempts to regain independance were made by Poles but were unsuccessful.
One of the reasons why more than a million people immigrated from Poland.
Strict policy of suppression of the Polish language and free education was enforced.
Birth place
She was born the youngest of 5 children
Her parents were both teachers
Her father was a math and physics instructor
Her mother was a head mistress of a private school
She married Pierre Curie in 1895
Had two daughters, Irene and Eve
Pierre died in 1906
-Curie's father was demoted, and they had to take boarders into their apartment.
-Around the age of 8-10 one of Curie's sisters caught typhus and died.
-Less than 3 years later her mother lost her battle with tuberculosis.
- This sent Curie into a depression and turned her against her religion.
- Marie made an agreement with her older sister, Bronislawa, that she would work for two years to support Bronislawa’s education in Paris, and once she graduated, Bronislawa would do the same for Marie.
Home Life
Curie was fascinated by radiation, and she made huge breakthroughs in understanding it .She also studied the properties of Uranium, in 1903 Curie became the first woman to receive the Nobel Prize in physics, and in 1911 she won her second Nobel Prize, this one in chemistry.
Contributions to Modern Atomic Theory intro
-Curie's main discoveries were through her work with a mineral called pitchblende.
- Curie's research had revealed that two uranium ores, pitchblende and chalcolite, were more radioactive than pure uranium.
- In 1898 Marie and her husband discovered two new radioactive elements in pitchblende which they named, Polonium, and Radium.
Summary of her evidence
People knew about X-rays at the time ( X standing for unknown), but Curie's colleague Henri Becquerel discovered that uranium salts emitted their own rays, and did not know why.

Curie discovered that it did not come from the molecules within the uranium but from the much smaller atoms.
Helped further the understanding of subatomic particles.
Her studies showed that the strength of the radiation did not depend on the compound that was being studied, It depended only on the amount of uranium or thorium.
Placement and Importance




- Curie was an excellent student.
-Girls were not allowed to attend university in Russian dominated Poland, so Curie became associated with the "Floating University".
-"Floating University" was an underground institution.
-1891 Curie moved to Paris to join her sister at university, where she enrolled as a student of physics.
-First woman to receive a PhD degree form a French university.
-First female professor at the University of Paris.
By: Leah and Bailee
Curie’s research was not without problems, no one at the time understood radiation poisoning. Almost on a daily basis, Marie and Pierre worked in normal research clothing.
Her writings had commented on how pretty she had found the blue-green colours given off by the radioactive isotopes she frequently carried around in her pockets.
In 1932 Marie Curie founded the ‘Radium Institute’ in Warsaw, Poland.
The name was changed after World War II to the ‘Maria Skłodowska-Curie Institute of Oncology’. The institute carries out specialized cancer research and treatment.
At the age of 67, Marie died from leukemia, thought to have been from her research, and the heavy use of X-ray machines during the war.
Additional information
- hypothesis: The emission of rays by uranium compounds could be an atomic property of the element uranium- something built into the very structure of its atoms.
-Her husband, Pierre, and his older brother had invented a new kind of electrometer.
-Using the electrometer Marie tested all known elements to determine if other elements or minerals would make air conduct electricity better, or if it was only uranium that could.
-In April 1898 her research revealed that thorium compounds, like those of uranium, emit Becquerel rays.
-The emissions also appeared to be an atomic property, and to describe the behavior of uranium and thorium she invented the word
More of Marie Curie's work
Marie and Pierre pioneered work on the effects of radium on living organisms, and showed it could damage tissue.
This discovery was put to use against cancer and other diseases at Radium Institute.
During World War I, Marie worked as an "X-ray technician", and taught radiological technology, equipped mobile X-ray vans to assist in the war effort.
Placement and Importance
Full transcript