Yang Chen-Ning

Born Oct 1, 1922

Yang Chen-Ning or Chen-Ning Yang, also known as C. N. Yang or by the English name Frank Yang, is a Chinese theoretical physicist who made significant contributions to statistical mechanics, integrable systems, gauge theory, and both particle physics and condensed matter physics. He and Tsung-Dao Lee received the 1957 Nobel Prize in Physics for their work on parity nonconservation of weak interaction. The two proposed that one of the basic quantum-mechanics laws, the conservation of parity, is violated in the so-called weak nuclear reactions, those nuclear processes that result in the emission of beta or alpha particles. Yang is also well known for his collaboration with Robert Mills in developing non-abelian gauge theory, widely known as the Yang–Mills theory.
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“In 1975, ... [speaking with Shiing Shen Chern], I told him I had finally learned ... the beauty of fiber-bundle theory and the profound Chern-Weil theorem. I said I found it amazing that gauge fields are exactly connections on fiber bundles, which the mathematicians developed without reference to the physical world. I added, “this is both thrilling and puzzling, since you mathematicians dreamed up these concepts out of nowhere.” He immediately protested: “No, no. These concepts were not dreamed up. They were natural and real.”

Yang Chen-Ning
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