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Shortly before his 80th birthday, on September 15, the physics Nobel laureate Murray Gell-Mann spoke with Science News Editor in Chief Tom Siegfried about his views on the current situation in particle physics and the interests he continues to pursue in other realms of science. Gell-Mann is most well known for introducing the concept of quarks, the building blocks of protons, neutrons and other particles that interact under the influence of the strong nuclear force. (SN: 9/12/09, p. 24) After many years as a professor of physics at Caltech, Gell-Mann moved in the mid-1980s to New Mexico as one of the founding members of the Santa Fe Institute, where he continues his research today.
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