Reference numberEC/1995/46
TitleWheeler, John Archibald: certificate of election to the Royal Society
DescriptionCertificate of Candidate for Election to Foreign Membership. Citation typed
CitationDistinguished over a wide range of theoretical physics and cosmology
In 1939, with Bohr, he explained the fission of uranium in terms of the liquid drop model of the nucleus. He played an important part in the Manhatten project. He made significant contributions to aspects of nuclear fusion, and he directed Project Matterhorn. He also introduced the fundamental concept of the S-matrix. He strongly influenced his student Feynman in his subsequent approach to quantum electrodynamics.
Later he played a key role in stimulating research in general relativity, stressing the importance of a geometric outlook. With Misner and Thorne he wrote an influential standard text on the subject. He was one of the first to recognize the importance of gravitational collapse to cosmology and astrophysics, and to point out the fundamental physical issues that this phenomenon raised. He has also made many other important contributions to the development of relativity and cosmology. He introduced several seminal ideas in quantum gravity, notably space-time foam, superspace, and the Wheeler-DeWitt equation. His interest in fundamental aspects of quantum theory led to the proposal of the delayed choice experiment.
He has been a most influential educator, of students, colleagues, and friends. By his writings, lectures, and discussions, he has been a great contributor to a deeper understanding of physics alike to the layman and to the specialist.
Access statusClosed
Fellows associated with this archive
NA4718Wheeler; John Archibald (1911 - 2008)1911 - 2008
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    Browse the records of some of our collections, which cover all branches of science and date from the 12th century onwards. These include the published works of Fellows of the Royal Society, personal papers of eminent scientists, letters and manuscripts sent to the Society or presented at meetings, and administrative records documenting the Society's activities since our foundation in 1660.

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