◀ ▲ ▶History / 20th-century / Person: O&amp;#x27;Raifeartaigh, Lochlainn
Person: O&amp;#x27;Raifeartaigh, Lochlainn
Lochlainn O'Raifeartaigh was an Irish physicist who worked in the field of theoretical particle physics.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- Tarlach O'Raifeartaigh studied at University College, Dublin and was a Gaelic scholar who became Professor of History at St Patrick's Training College, Drumcondra, Dublin.
- O'Raifeartaigh's primary school education was at St Joseph's school, run by the Christian Brothers, in the Marino district of Dublin.
- The College had 254 pupils in 1950 when O'Raifeartaigh graduated.
- Schrödinger retired in 1956 and left Ireland to return to Austria so O'Raifeartaigh went to the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies where he worked under John Synge who held the post of Senior Professor in the School of Theoretical Physics of the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies.
- In addition to his studies of mathematics and physics at University College, Dublin, O'Raifeartaigh was also passionate about the Irish language.
- This Society, which was open to all students in Irish universities, both north and south, held a meeting in Teelin near Donegal which was attended by O'Raifeartaigh and Treasa Donnelly.
- In addition, she was a student of Celtic Studies in Belfast who shared O'Raifeartaigh's love of the theatre and of hill walking.
- O'Raifeartaigh began to undertake research towards his doctorate at the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies in 1956, working under John Synge.
- O'Raifeartaigh undertook research at Zürich, advised by Heitler, and was awarded a doctorate in 1960 for his thesis Non Local Field Theories.
- Heitler and Arnous had studied nonlocal field theories and, in his doctoral thesis, O'Raifeartaigh continued their work studying the SSS-matrix in their nonlocal field theory.
- After obtaining his doctorate, O'Raifeartaigh returned to Dublin where he was appointed as an assistant professor of physics at the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies in 1961.
- Not long after taking up this appointment, O'Raifeartaigh was on a visit to Bern, Switzerland, when he met by chance the Indian theoretical physicist Ennackal Chandy George Sudarshan.
- This led to O'Raifeartaigh being invited to lecture at the Mathematical Science Institute in Madras, (now Chennai) India, which was just in the process of being founded in 1962.
- O'Raifeartaigh spent three months over the winter of 1963-64 at the Mathematical Science Institute in Madras where he lectured on local Lie groups and their representations.
- This result, which became known as O'Raifeartaigh's Theorem, brought to an abrupt end major efforts to effect this combination.
- Lochlainn O'Raifeartaigh.
- The 'O'Raifeartaigh no-go theorem' was a hugely controversial result at the time and brought quite a few Ph.D. studies to an abrupt halt ...
- O'Raifeartaigh made a second visit to the Institut des Hautes Études Scientifiques in 1983-84.
- Theoretical physics developed rapidly from the 1970s onwards with many of the new ideas related to areas in which O'Raifeartaigh was a leading expert, namely in using group theoretical methods.
- After editing General Relativity; Papers in Honour of J L Synge (1972), O'Raifeartaigh wrote a book on the topic for which he is most famous, namely Lecture Notes on Supersymmetry (1975).
- In this work, Lochlainn O'Raifeartaigh describes the former phase.
- O'Raifeartaigh first illustrates how gravitational theory and quantum mechanics played crucial roles in the reassessment of gauge theory as a geometric principle and as a framework for describing both electromagnetism and gravitation.
- We should mention O'Raifeartaigh's collaborations with scientists from Eastern Europe, especially Hungary, Poland and the USSR, throughout the late cold war.
- Fehér and Horváthy dedicated a 2009 electronic version of their 1989 paper Applications of chiral supersymmetry for spin fields in self-dual backgrounds written with O'Raifeartaigh to "our late teacher, collaborator and friend".
- O'Raifeartaigh received several major honours for his outstanding contributions including election to the Royal Irish Academy in 1963, election as a fellow of the Institute of Physics in 1990, election to the Academia Europaea in 1991, awarded the prestigious von Humbolt Research Award in 1996 and the Eugene Wigner Medal in August 2000.
- An international symposium, 'Symposium on Non-Perturbative and Symmetry Methods in Field Theory', was held in Budapest in June 2006 to celebrate O'Raifeartaigh's life and work.
- We mentioned O'Raifeartaigh's love of the Irish language, of the theatre and of hill walking above.
- After a short illness, O'Raifeartaigh died from liver cancer at the age of 67.
Born 11 March 1933, Clontarf, Dublin, Ireland. Died 18 November 2000, Dublin, Ireland.
View full biography at MacTutor
Tags relevant for this person:
Astronomy, Origin Ireland
Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive