The strange, tragic story of Egypts foremost female nuclear scientist

News Summary

  • As the threat of nuclear annihilation remained high for much of the Cold War, many in the public became uneasy with their governments and the scientists working for them.Many physicists realized that the genie was out of the bottle and recognized this mistrust—or shared it.
  • She said, “I’ll make nuclear treatment as available and as cheap as Aspirin.” Still, she was concerned that this formula could be twisted to create something much more deadly: an atomic bomb.
  • According to a 2022 Inside Arabia article, Moussa’s “research laid the groundwork for a revolution and the affordability and safety of nuclear medicine.”Excited by her discovery, Moussa kept her focus on medical applications, including shortening patient X-ray exposure times and making X-ray procedures more mobile and flexible.
  • Some reports claim that Moussa’s father was a political activist, which may have inspired her later activism.After success as a primary and secondary school student, Moussa was accepted to Cairo University’s nuclear physics program, specifically focusing on X-rays.
  • Europe had an even more extended history with X-ray development, as scientist Marie Curie transported a mobile X-ray machine across World War I battlefields.Like others before her, Moussa studied radioactive isotopes used to create medical images, a technique still used today.
  • Her work makes her a worthy role model for women and physicists worldwide, but she’s largely unknown because her crusade for peaceful nuclear power would eventually cost her her life.
3 with Science and the technology it enables have always had a close relationship with warfare. But World War II saw sciences destructive power raised to new levels. As the threat of nuclear annih [+3934 chars]