Introduction and Family History of Dr. C.V. Raman

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Introduction and Family History of Dr. C.V. Raman


Introduction and Family History of Dr. C.V. Raman 1
“I am a man of Science.”

C.V. Raman is one of the most renowned scientists, produced by India. His full name was Chandrasekhara Venkata Raman. For his pioneering work on the scattering of light, C.V. Raman won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1930.

Chandrasekhara Venkata Raman was born at Tiruchirapalli in Southern India on November 7. 1888. His father was a lecturer in mathematics and physics so from the very beginning, he was immersed in an academic atmosphere. C.V. Raman entered the Presidency College, Madras, in 1902, and in 1904 passed his Bachelors examination, winning the first place and the gold medal in Physics. In 1907, he gained his Master’s degree, obtaining the highest distinctions.

His earliest researches in optics and acoustics, the two fields of investigation to which he has dedicated his entire career, were carried out while he was a student.

Raman wanted to go to England for further studies but he was declared physically unfit to go to England by the Civil Surgeon of Madras. Raman then joined the Indian Finance Department in 1907 after topping the Financial Civil Services (FCS) examination. Though the duties of his office took most of his time, Raman found opportunities for carrying on experimental research in the laboratory of the Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science at Calcutta (Kolkata) of which he became the Honorary Secretary in 1919.

In 1917, he was offered the newly endowed Palit Chair of Physics at Kolkata University, and decided to accept it. After 15 years at Calcutta, he became Professor at the Indian Institute of Science at Bangalore (1933-1948). Raman also founded the Indian Journal of Physics in 1926, of which he was the Editor. He sponsored the establishment of the Indian Academy of Sciences and served as president since its inception. He also initiated the proceedings of that academy, in which much of his work has been published.

In 1922, Raman published his work on the “Molecular Diffraction of Light”, the first of a series of investigations with his collaborators which ultimately led to his discovery of the radiation effect on February 28, 1928 and gained him the 1930 Nobel Prize in Physics.

Other investigations carried out by Raman were his experimental and theoretical studies on the diffraction of light by acoustic waves of ultrasonic and hypersonic frequencies (published in 1934-1942), and those on the effects produced by X-rays on infrared vibrations in crystals exposed to ordinary light.

In 1948, Raman, through studying the spectroscopic behaviour of crystals, approached in a new manner the fundamental problems of crystal dynamics. His laboratory had been dealing with the structure and properties of diamond, the structure and optical behaviour of numerous iridescent substances. Among his other interests had been the optics of colloids, electrical and magnetic anisotropy, and the physiology of human vision.

Raman has been honoured with a large number of honorary doctorates and memberships of scientific societies. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society early in his career (1924), and was knighted in 1929. Dr. C.V. Raman died on November 21, 1970, at the age of eighty two.

Family History

Tiruchirapalli is a town on the banks of the river Cauvery. R. Chandrasekhara Iyer was a teacher in a school there. He was a scholar in Physics and Mathematics. He loved music. His wife was Parvathi Ammal. Their second son was bom on 7th November 1888. They named the boy Venkata Raman. He was also called Chandrasekhara Venkata Raman or C.V. Raman.
Introduction and Family History of Dr. C.V. Raman 2
Raman was three years old when his father joined the A.V.N. College at Vishakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, as lecturer in Mathematics and Physics. He had procured an excellent collection of books on Physics, Mathematics and Philosophy. Chandrasekhara Iyer was a great lover of music and played violin extremely well.

Raman looked very ordinary and quite unimpressive in his childhood but he had the brain of a genius.