Aaron Klug on What It Takes to Be a Scientist
  Aaron Klug     Biography    
Recorded: 14 Jun 2005

Well, you have to be curious. You have to find—be curious. Ultimately it’s curiosity in a good sense. How things work, how the world works. Also I think you have to have a mentality where you can solve puzzles, which I mentioned before, worthwhile puzzles. I used to play chess and bridge and so on. I soon gave it up. It wasn’t worth remembering all those things in the game. So in a sense doing science, it is marvelous because it’s like a hobby as well as an interest. I don’t have that kind of passionate interest that some people talk about. Helping mankind. Solving the great problems. Because I was content to tackle less than the important problems because you never know where they might lead. You see there wasn’t the golden—with Jim Watson’s very unusual career, there was something called DNA that was there.

Aaron Klug is chemist and biophysicist and winner of the Nobel Prize in chemistry. After completing his BSc at University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, he attended the University of Cape Town on scholarship where he received M.Sc. degree. In 1949 he moved to Cambridge in England, he studied molecular structure of steel and wrote a thesis on the changes that occur when molten steel solidifies, for which he earned Ph.D. in 1952.

In 1953 he obtained a fellowship to work at Birkbeck Collage in London, where he met Rosalind Franklin. They worked together to determine the structural nature of the tobacco mosaic virus. After Franklin's death in 1958 he continued his work on viruses together with Kenneth Holmes and John Finch. In 1962 he accepted a position at Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge.

His major contribution to scientific research was the development of crystallography electron microscopy for which he was awarded Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1982. He was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 1988.

More Information: Wikipedia, Nobelprize.org

Left         Right