Joan Feynman facts for kids

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Joan Feynman
Born March 31, 1927 (1927-03-31) (age 92)
Queens, New York, United States
Nationality American
Fields Astrophysics
Institutions National Center for Atmospheric Research, National Science Foundation, Boston College, Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Alma mater Oberlin College
Syracuse University
Doctoral advisor Melvin Lax
Known for Work on auroras, solar wind
Notable awards NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal

Joan Feynman (born March 31, 1927) is an American astrophysicist. She has made important contributions to the study of solar wind particles and fields; sun-Earth relations; and magnetospheric physics. In particular, Feynman is known for developing an understanding of the origin of auroras. She is also known for creating a model that predicts the number of high-energy particles likely to hit a spacecraft over its lifetime, and for uncovering a method for predicting sunspot cycles. Feynman is the younger sister of physicist Richard Feynman.


Feynman earned a bachelor's degree from Oberlin College. She later attended Syracuse University, where she studied solid state theory in the physics department under Melvin Lax. During her graduate years, Feynman took a year off to live in Guatemala, where she studied the anthropology of the Maya peoples who lived there. Feynman eventually earned her doctorate in physics in 1958. She also completed postdoctoral work at Columbia University.

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