Myriam Sarachik

Myriam Paula Sarachik (August 8, 1933 – October 7, 2021) was a Belgian-born American experimental physicist. From 1996, she was a distinguished professor of physics at the City College of New York.

Myriam Sarachik
APS 2019 - 20.jpg
Sarachik in 2019
Born
Myriam Paula Morgenstein

(1933-08-08)August 8, 1933
Antwerp, Belgium
DiedOctober 7, 2021(2021-10-07) (aged 88)
Manhattan, New York, U.S.
Alma materColumbia University (M.S., 1957; Ph.D, 1960, physics)
Barnard College (B.A., 1954, physics)
Scientific career
FieldsPhysics
InstitutionsCity College of New York
ThesisPenetration of magnetic fields through superconducting lead films (1960)
Doctoral advisorRichard Garwin

Early life and educationEdit

Myriam Paula Morgenstein was born on August 8, 1933, in Antwerp, Belgium.[1][2] Her parents Sarah (Segal) and Schloimo Morgenstein, who were Orthodox Jews,[3] fled Belgium in 1940 due to the German occupation of Belgium during World War II.[1] In 1941, in an attempt to cross the border between France and Spain, the family was apprehended and interned in Merignac, a concentration camp near Bordeaux. They were then transferred to Camp de la Lande near Tours. The family escaped the same year and were smuggled across the border between German-occupied France and Vichy France.[4]

She spent the next five and a half years in Cuba as a refugee, where she attended school and learned Spanish and English.[5] In 1947, Sarachik and her family were granted visas to enter the United States and they moved to New York.[5]

She was graduated from the Bronx High School of Science in 1950 and began studying at Barnard College the same year. She was awarded a B.A. in 1954.[4][6] She received her M.S. at Columbia University in 1957, and her Ph.D. at Columbia University in 1960,[7] where her advisor was Richard Garwin.[8] Her Ph.D. research looked into measuring the attenuation of a magnetic field by Type-I superconducting films.[5] She published results from her doctoral research in Physical Review Letters and the IBM Journal of Research and Development the same year as she received her doctorate.[9]

Academic careerEdit

While working at the Bell Telephone Laboratories in the 1960s, Sarachik's experiments provided the first data that confirmed the Kondo effect.[10]

Despite her mentors advising that becoming a housewife or part-time teacher might suit her more appropriately, Sarachik joined the physics department of the City College of New York as an assistant professor in 1964.[1][4][6][9] Three years later, in 1967, she was elevated to associate professor. In 1971, she became a full professor.[9] In 1996, City College honored her by naming her as distinguished professor of physics.

Her work was primarily in the field of low temperature condensed matter physics, in which she focused on molecular nanomagnets and novel phenomena in dilute two-dimensional electron systems.[11] Some of her research sought to understand the conditions under which an insulator can become a conductor. Experiments of this type must be performed near absolute zero.[6] Sarachik also researched the transport and magnetic properties of semiconductors and quantum tunnelling.[12]

In 2020 Sarachik was awarded the American Physical Society (APS) Medal for Exceptional Achievement in Research for her "contributions to the physics of electronic transport in solids and molecular magnetism".[13][10] She was president of APS in 2003, and was awarded the Oliver E. Buckley Condensed Matter Physics Prize in 2005.[14] In 2008, she was elected to the governing council of the National Academy of Sciences.[15]

She was active in defending the human rights of scientists as a member and chair of the Committee on the International Freedom of Scientists of the APS, a long-time member of the Human Rights of Scientists Committee of the New York Academy of Sciences, and a board member of the Committee of Concerned Scientists.[16]

Honors and awardsEdit

Sarachik received the following honors:[2]

  • Member, National Academy of Sciences (elected 1994)[17]
  • Member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences (elected 1999)[18]
  • Fellow, American Physical Society [2]
  • Fellow, New York Academy of Sciences [2]
  • Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science [19]
  • Recipient, 1995 NYC Mayor's Award for Excellence in Mathematical, Physical, and Engineering Sciences [2]
  • Recipient, 2004 Sloan Public Service Award from the Fund for the City of New York [19]
  • Recipient, 2005 L'Oréal/UNESCO For Women in Science Laureate for North America [20]
  • Recipient, 2005 APS Oliver E. Buckley Prize in Condensed Matter Physics [19]
  • Recipient, 2006 Honorary Doctor of Science degree from Amherst College[19]
  • Recipient, 2020 APS Medal for Exceptional Achievement in Research [13][10]

Personal lifeEdit

In 1954, Myriam married Philip Sarachik, a professor of electrical engineering at New York University.[4][10] They had two children, Karen and Leah. In 1970, five-year-old Leah was kidnapped by Sarachik's housekeeper using the family car. The housekeeper's body was found 12 days later and Leah's body was found a month after that.[21][22]

Sarachik died on October 7, 2021, in Manhattan at the age of 88.[1]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d Chang, Kenneth (October 13, 2021). "Myriam Sarachik, Physicist Who Plumbed Magnetism, Dies at 88". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Archived from the original on October 13, 2021. Retrieved October 13, 2021.
  2. ^ a b c d e Clark, W. Gilbert (ed.). "Sarachik, Myriam P". Contributions of 20th Century Women to Physics. University of California, Los Angeles. Archived from the original on September 23, 2012. Retrieved November 9, 2012.
  3. ^ Chang, Kenneth (August 31, 2020). "Myriam Sarachik Never Gave Up on Physics". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Archived from the original on August 31, 2020. Retrieved October 13, 2021.
  4. ^ a b c d Sarachik, Myriam P. (March 10, 2018). "Pushing Boundaries: My Personal and Scientific Journey". Annual Review of Condensed Matter Physics. 9 (1): 1–15. Bibcode:2018ARCMP...9....1S. doi:10.1146/annurev-conmatphys-033117-054029. ISSN 1947-5454.
  5. ^ a b c Sarachik, Myriam P. (March 10, 2018). "Pushing Boundaries: My Personal and Scientific Journey". Annual Review of Condensed Matter Physics. 9 (1): 1–15. Bibcode:2018ARCMP...9....1S. doi:10.1146/annurev-conmatphys-033117-054029. ISSN 1947-5454. Archived from the original on December 24, 2019. Retrieved October 14, 2021.
  6. ^ a b c Hargittai, Magdolna (2015). Women Scientists: Reflections, Challenges, and Breaking Boundaries. Oxford University Press. pp. 169–173. ISBN 978-0-19-935999-8. OCLC 900783734.
  7. ^ "Myriam Sarachik". City College of New York. August 3, 2015. Archived from the original on November 10, 2019. Retrieved October 14, 2021.
  8. ^ "Myriam P Sarachik (nee Morgenstein)". Mathematics Genealogy Project. Department of Mathematics, North Dakota State University. Archived from the original on July 9, 2021. Retrieved September 2, 2020.
  9. ^ a b c Oakes, Elizabeth H. (2002). International Encyclopedia of Women Scientists. Facts on File. p. 319. ISBN 0-8160-4381-7. OCLC 45835614.
  10. ^ a b c d Chang, Kenneth (August 31, 2020). "Myriam Sarachik Never Gave Up on Physics". The New York Times. Archived from the original on August 31, 2020. Retrieved August 31, 2020.
  11. ^ "Myriam Sarachik". www.ccny.cuny.edu. The City College of New York. August 3, 2015. Archived from the original on November 10, 2019. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  12. ^ Bailey, Martha J. (1998). American Women in Science: 1950 to the Present: A Biographical Dictionary. ABC-Clio. p. 347. ISBN 0-87436-921-5. OCLC 39060650.
  13. ^ a b "2020 APS Medal for Exceptional Achievement in Research Awarded to Myriam P. Sarachik". www.aps.org. Archived from the original on August 13, 2020. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  14. ^ "2005 Oliver E. Buckley Condensed Matter Physics Prize Recipient". APS Physics. American Physical Society. Archived from the original on August 19, 2021. Retrieved August 31, 2020.
  15. ^ Simon, Ellis (February 19, 2008). "CCNY Distinguished Professor Myriam P. Sarachik elected to governing council of National Academy of Sciences". CUNY Newswire. The City University of New York. Archived from the original on January 5, 2009. Retrieved November 9, 2012.
  16. ^ "National Academy of Sciences Elects Treasurer and Councilors". Office of News and Public Information, National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. February 12, 2008. Archived from the original on December 20, 2020. Retrieved October 14, 2021.
  17. ^ "Myriam P. Sarachik". National Academy of Sciences. Archived from the original on September 29, 2021. Retrieved October 14, 2021.
  18. ^ "Myriam P. Sarachik". American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Archived from the original on October 14, 2021. Retrieved October 14, 2021.
  19. ^ a b c d "2020 APS Medal for Exceptional Achievement in Research Awarded to Myriam P. Sarachik". www.aps.org. Retrieved October 14, 2021.
  20. ^ "Five Remarkable Women Physicists Receive The L'Oréal-Unesco For Women In Science Award For 2005" (PDF). March 3, 2005. Retrieved October 13, 2021.
  21. ^ "Police Think Body Is Sarachik Girl's". The New York Times. October 25, 1970. ISSN 0362-4331. Archived from the original on February 11, 2021. Retrieved October 13, 2021.
  22. ^ "CCS Board Member, Myriam Sarachik, Profiled in NY Post Article". Committee of Concerned Scientists. November 20, 2019. Archived from the original on August 11, 2020. Retrieved August 17, 2020.

Further readingEdit

External linksEdit