external image rutherford.jpg
Name: unknown
Birth: N/A
Date of Discovery: 1910, 1912, 1913, 1919
Country of Origin: Nelson, New Zealand

Ernest Rutherford was born August 30, 1871 in Nelson, New Zealand. He attended the University of New Zealand, Wellington where he was admitted to Canterbury College. From here, Rutherford received his masters in math and physical science, then later his bachelor’s in science. After years of teaching, Rutherford took Joseph Thomson’s position as Cavendish Professor of Physics at Cambridge, where he became a streak of extensive in depth lab work. It was here that Rutherford named alpha, gamma, and beta rays and the laws of radioactivity. After winning a Nobel Prize for his discoveries, Rutherford went on to pioneer the Rutherford model atom through his gold foil experiment in which a thin sheet of gold was surround by a sheet of zinc sulfide that would light up every time it was struck by alpha particles. This experiment lead to the conclusion that atoms were mostly empty space with a highly electric field surrounding the nucleus.

This was come to be known as the Rutherford Model:
external image goldfoil2.jpg

Electron Cloud:

external image electron_cloud.gif