Professor Jocelyn Bell

It was a please to see Professor Bell interview on the BBC News. Made famous by her discover of Pulsars which she discovered while doing her PhD at Cambridge. Controversially though, it was her supervisor Professor Anthony Hewish who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics for the work.

Professor Bell as defended the Nobel prizes institution by offering there were various reasons for this ranging from the risk Professor Hewish was making in announcing the discovery. Had it been wrong it would have reflected more badly on him than the then Ms Bell.

Also as Professor Bell puts it, the Nobel Prize committee would have seen students as unwanted dross (her words!). So the credit went to Prof Hewish not herself.

However as she has often said, she is not embittered by it. As she said if she were awarded the prize she would have got nothing else. Since she has received every other awarded and honour going. in fact i think its in line with what Prof Richard Feyman said when he was told he had been awarded the Nobel prize. He initially was going to decline it, until he told to do so would result in more publicity than if he accepted it.

Perhaps more controversially the fall out of Prof Bells award, Fred Hoyle argued with the committee saying he did not think he was right. It cost him his prize as well!