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Samuel C. C. Ting

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Title: Samuel C. C. Ting  
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Subject: Burton Richter, Chen-Ning Yang, Gao Xingjian, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nobel Prize in Physics
Collection: 1936 Births, American Nobel Laureates, American People of Chinese Descent, American People of Taiwanese Descent, American Physicists, Brookhaven National Laboratory Nobel Laureates, Columbia University Faculty, Fellows of Pakistan Academy of Sciences, Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Foreign Members of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Foreign Members of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Foreign Members of the Ussr Academy of Sciences, Han Chinese Nobel Laureates, Living People, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Faculty, Members of Academia Sinica, Members of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Members of the United States National Academy of Sciences, National Cheng Kung University Alumni, Nobel Laureates in Physics, Particle Physicists, People Associated with Cern, People from Ann Arbor, Michigan, University of Michigan Alumni
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Samuel C. C. Ting

Samuel Chao Chung Ting
Samuel Ting after a presentation at the Kennedy Space Center in October 2010
Born (1936-01-27) January 27, 1936
Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States
Citizenship United States
Nationality United States
Fields Physics
Institutions CERN
Columbia University
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Alma mater University of Michigan
Doctoral advisor L.W. Jones, M.L. Perl
Known for Discovery of the J/ψ particle
Notable awards Ernest Orlando Lawrence Award (1975)
Nobel Prize for Physics (1976)
Eringen Medal (1977)
De Gasperi Award (1988),
Spouse Kay Kuhne, Susan Carol Marks
Samuel Ting

Samuel Chao Chung Ting (Chinese: 丁肇中; pinyin: Dīng Zhàozhōng; Wade–Giles: Ting Chao-chung) (born January 27, 1936) is an American physicist who received the Nobel Prize in 1976, with Burton Richter, for discovering the subatomic J/ψ particle. He is the principal investigator for the international $1.5 billion Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer experiment which was installed on the International Space Station on 19 May 2011.


  • Biography 1
  • Nobel Prize 2
  • Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer 3
  • Personal life 4
  • Publications 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8


Samuel Ting was born on January 27, 1936, in Ann Arbor, Michigan. His parents, Kuan-hai Ting (丁觀海) and Tsun-ying Jeanne Wang (王雋英), met and married as graduate students at the University of Michigan. His parents were from Rizhao County (日照縣) in the Shandong province of China.[1]

Ting's parents returned to Rizhao two months after his birth.[1] Due to the Japanese invasion, his education was disrupted, and he was mostly home-schooled by his parents. Because of the Chinese Civil War, his parents escaped to Taiwan and started to teach engineering in local academic institution. From 1948, Ting attended high school and college in Taiwan, but he soon dropped out the college at the freshman year.[2][3]

In 1956, Ting was invited to attend the CERN. From 1965, he taught at Columbia University and worked at the Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron (DESY) in Germany. Since 1969, Ting has been a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Ting is a member of the United States National Academy of Sciences, an academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and a foreign academician of Academia Sinica.[2]

Nobel Prize

In 1976, Ting was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics, which he shared with Burton Richter of the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center, for the discovery of the J/ψ meson nuclear particle. They were chosen for the award, in the words of the Nobel committee, "for their pioneering work in the discovery of a heavy elementary particle of a new kind."[4] The discovery was made in 1974 when Ting was heading a research team at MIT exploring new regimes of high energy particle physics.[5]

Ting gave his Nobel Prize acceptance speech in Mandarin. Although there had been Chinese recipients before (Tsung-Dao Lee and Chen Ning Yang), none had previously delivered the acceptance speech in Chinese. In his Nobel banquet speech, Ting emphasized the importance of experimental work:

In reality, a theory in natural science cannot be without experimental foundations; physics, in particular, comes from experimental work. I hope that awarding the Nobel Prize to me will awaken the interest of students from the developing nations so that they will realize the importance of experimental work.[6]

Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer

In 1995, not long after the cancellation of the Superconducting Super Collider project had severely reduced the possibilities for experimental high-energy physics on Earth, Ting proposed the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer, a space-borne cosmic-ray detector. The proposal was accepted and he became the principal investigator and has been directing the development since then. A prototype, AMS-01, was flown and tested on Space Shuttle mission STS-91 in 1998. The main mission, AMS-02, was then planned for launch by the Shuttle and mounting on the International Space Station.[7]

This project is a massive $1.5 billion undertaking involving 500 scientists from 56 institutions and 16 countries. After the 2003 Space Shuttle Columbia disaster, NASA announced that the Shuttle was to be retired by 2010 and that AMS-02 was not on the manifest of any of the remaining Shuttle flights. Dr. Ting was forced to (successfully) lobby the United States Congress and the public to secure an additional Shuttle flight dedicated to this project. Also during this time, Ting had to deal with numerous technical problems in fabricating and qualifying the large, extremely sensitive and delicate detector module for space. AMS-02 was successfully launched on Shuttle mission STS-134 on 16 May 2011 and was installed on the International Space Station on 19 May 2011.[8] [9]

Personal life

In 1960 Ting married Kay Kuhne, and together they had two daughters, Jeanne Ting Chowning and Amy Ting. In 1985 he married Dr. Susan Carol Marks, and they had one son, Christopher.[3]


See also


  1. ^ a b Ng, Franklin (1995). The Asian American encyclopedia. Marshall Cavendish. pp. 1, 490.  
  2. ^ a b "About The Programs - Personal Journeys: Samuel C.C. Ting". A Bill Moyers Special - Becoming American - The Chinese Experience. 2003. Retrieved June 2, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b "Samuel C.C. Ting - Biographical". Nobel prizes and laureates.  
  4. ^ "The Nobel Prize in Physics 1976". Retrieved 2009-10-09. 
  5. ^ "Experimental Observation of a Heavy Particle J".  
  6. ^ "Samuel C.C.Ting - Banquet Speech". Nobel Media AB 2013. Dec 10, 1976. Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer - 02 (AMS-02)". NASA. 2009-08-21. Retrieved 2009-09-03. 
  8. ^ Jeremy Hsu (2009-09-02). "Space Station Experiment to Hunt Antimatter Galaxies". Retrieved 2009-09-02. 
  9. ^ A Costly Quest for the Dark Heart of the Cosmos (New York Times, November 16, 2010)

External links

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