Elected: 1965
Discipline: Physics and Astronomy
Professor William Cochran FRS FRSE
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William Cochran, who died on 28th August 2003 at the age of 81, was a distinguished ‎physicist of international renown. During the 1950’s and 1960’s he did pioneering work on ‎many of the problems that underpinned Nobel prizes won by others, including the structure of ‎DNA, so-called ‘direct methods’ for determining the arrangement of atoms in crystal ‎structures, and the interpretation of the way atoms vibrate in solids from the then new ‎technique of inelastic neutron scattering. He was also responsible for major advances in the ‎theoretical understanding of the way crystalline solids transform from one structure to ‎another, often accompanied by important changes in physical properties. ‎