Date: 03 Sep 2014

Henyey, Louis George

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BornMcKees Rocks, Pennsylvania, USA, 3 February 1910

DiedBerkeley, California, USA, 10 February 1970

American theoretical astrophysicist Louis Henyey developed the modern numerical method of studying the theoretical evolution of stars in computer models. In Henyey’s method, the computed structure from one computation is used as the initial guess for a somewhat later period, during which nuclear reactions slightly change the composition of the star. Henyey’s iterative method quickly replaced an earlier one developed by Martin Schwarzschild.

Henyey was the son of Hungarian immigrants Albert and Mary Henyey. In 1938, he married the Budapest-born Elisabeth Rose Belak. They had three children, Elisabeth Maryrose, Thomas (a geologist), and Frank (a physicist).

Henyey received BS and MS degrees from the Case School of Applied Science in Cleveland in 1932 and 1933 and a Ph.D. in 1937 from the University of Chicago (Yerkes Observatory) with a thesis on radiative transfer in reflection nebulae in th ...