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REF NO.: 62

SUBJECT: Noted Canadian physicist to give public talk at Memorial
DATE: Oct. 19, 2004

Note to editors:

As part of Celebrate Memorial 2004, Dr. Davis Earle, physicist with the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory and one of this year’s honorary graduates, will give a public talk titled Observing the Sun from 2 Kilometres Underground. The talk will take place on Monday, Oct. 25 in room E-2018A, located in the Education building. The lecture begins at 7:30 p.m.and will focus on the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory, its relevance and place within the scientific community.

Born in Carbonear, Newfoundland, Dr. Davis Earle followed his undergraduate degree at Memorial University(B.Sc., 1958) with a M.Sc. at the University of British Columbiain 1960. In 1959, he was awarded the Rhodes Scholarship and completed his D.Phil. at Oxford in 1964. From there, he moved to Chalk River Laboratories of Atomic Energy of Canada and began a long career of contribution to experimental nuclear physics.

His career took a different turn in 1984 when he joined a group of fellow scientists planning what would become the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory (SNO). The intent was to measure solar neutrinos using heavy water. This required an initial feasibility study and, once feasibility had been established, the development of a major funding proposal. Dr. Earle was a key figure in both of these aspects of the project and, consequently, later became the project's associate director.

Dr. Earle then undertook responsibility for construction of what was the equivalent of a 10-story subterranean building and of ensuring that the structure was ultra-clean – so that the radioactivity was reduced to levels until then unachieved. The same demands were made of the massive acrylic sphere which had to hold $300-million of heavy water, the crucial aspect of neutrino detection. Those demands were met and SNO's work proceeded to receive international regard.

Today the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory is one of the most ambitious and large scale science projects in Canadian history.

Celebrate Memorial is an annual celebration of Memorial’s connection to the community. What began in 1999 with the Festival of Anniversaries, highlighting Memorial’s 50th anniversary as a degree-granting institution, has today become a celebration of the contributions that Memorial’s students, faculty, staff and alumni make to Newfoundland and Labrador.

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