Homi Jehangir Bhabha:
113th Birth anniversary of Indian nuclear physicist Homi Jehangir Bhabha who is also known as the father of the Indian nuclear program. He was born on 30 October 1909 in Bombay, Bombay Presidency, British India (now Mumbai, Maharashtra, India). His invaluable contributions to the field of science continue to inspire generations of young minds in the country. Homi J Bhabha was born into a prominent wealthy Parsi family.
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On 24 January 1966, Bhabha died when Air India Flight 101 crashed near Mont Blanc. The official reason for the crash-A misunderstanding between Geneva Airport and the pilot about the aircraft’s position near the mountain. However, there are assassination claims like the involvement of a foreign intelligence agency to paralyse India’s nuclear program.
Here are some interesting facts related to this great personality:
- Homi J Bhabha was the founding director and professor of physics at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR).
- Homi J Bhabha was also the founding director of the Atomic Energy Establishment, Trombay (AEET). It is now named the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre in his honour.
- TIFR and AEET were the cornerstones of Indian development of nuclear weapons and both were supervised by Bhabha as director.
- In 1942, Bhabha was awarded the Adams Prize and Padma Bhushan in 1954.
- In 1951 and 1953–1956, Bhabha was also nominated for the Nobel Prize for Physics.
The career of Homi Jehangir Bhabha:
- Bhabha, in January 1933, received his doctorate in nuclear physics after publishing his first scientific paper-“The Absorption of Cosmic radiation”. This very paper helped him win the Isaac Newton Studentship in 1934.
- There was no institute in India that had the necessary facilities for original work in nuclear physics and this prompted Bhabha to send a proposal in March 1944 to the Sir Dorabji Tata Trust for establishing one.
- Homi J Bhabha is also known for formulating a strategy of focusing on extracting power from the country’s vast thorium reserves. It is pertinent to mention here India has meager uranium reserves.