Norman Foster Ramsey, Jr.

American physicist

Norman Foster Ramsey Jr. (August 27, 1915November 4, 2011) was an American physicist. He was awarded the 1989 Nobel Prize in Physics for the invention of the separated oscillatory field method, which had important applications in the construction of atomic clocks. Ramsey shared the prize with Hans G. Dehmelt and Wolfgang Paul.

Norman Foster Ramsey (right) with the atombomb Little Boy, 1945


  • You have to get a little untrapped from too much prior knowledge.
    • explaining what's the best way of thinking, in an oral history conducted in 1995 by Andrew Goldstein, IEEE History Center, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, USA.

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