Lev Landau: a great physicist who proposed the “formula of happiness”

Photo: nobelprize.org

In 1938, Landau was arrested for “anti-Soviet agitation”, was held in prison for a year and was released by a letter in his defense from Niels Bohr and the intervention of Kapitza, Landau took “on bail”.

Subsequently, Landau remained a member of the Institute of physical problems. In a number of areas of science in which he made his contribution, can be called quantum mechanics and quantum electrodynamics, physics of atomic nuclei, astrophysics, hydrodynamics and many more. In 1962 Landau was awarded the Nobel prize “for his pioneering theories of condensed matter, especially liquid helium”.

Landau was remembered by contemporaries not only as an outstanding physicist, but also as a person with a bright sense of humor – in particular, his classification of Sciences into “natural”, “unnatural” and “unnatural.”

One physicist said that he created a “theory of happiness”. In his opinion, in order to achieve happiness, a person equal proportions of the essential three components: work, love and communication with people . Although a scientist and has invented many obviously humorous “classifications” to this formula, he was treated surprisingly seriously and are called to the same others.

Although Landau told his wife that his first duty is to make her happy, it is worth noting that perceptions of the scientist about the marital life was quite specific. Starting to live in a de facto marriage with the graduate of physical faculty of Concordia Drobantseva, he made her promise that she will not be jealous of his other women, and even signed the so-called “Pact of non-aggression in marriage”, implying a relative freedom in the novels on the side.

7 January 1962, on the road from Moscow to Dubna, on the Dmitrovskoye motorway, Landau was in a car accident. As a result of numerous fractures, bleeding and head trauma, he was in for 59 days in a coma. After that he did very little science, but, according to his wife and son, Landau gradually returned to its normal condition. Unfortunately, in 1968, the physicist died for reasons not related to his brain.

By the way, a year ago, Google has dedicated their home page to the man whose biography was quite directly connected with the fate of the Landau – canadian American neurosurgeon Wilder Penfield to, among whose patients was a Soviet physicist. Helping Landau while he was in a coma, Penfield found evidence that even if motor control is completely lost and the brain is not able to continuously produce a record of the stream of consciousness, conscious perception persists.

Read “Wilder Penfield: the brain surgeon, to unravel the mysteries of the mind to treat epilepsy”

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