By Syed Aslam
Dr. Mahmoud Hessaby was born in Tehran in 1903. His family moved to Beirut, Lebanon in 1907. He received religious instructions and studied Persian literature from his devoted and learned mother. Memorized the Holly Qurâ€™an by heart at an early age and read the great poetry of Hafez, Saâ€™adi and Ferdowsi when he was just a teenager.
After completing his high school he chose American College of Beirut, graduating with a bachelorâ€™s degree of Science. He continued his studies in Civil Engineering and after receiving his degree he studied Mathematics Astronomy and Physics. He moved to France and worked for French National Railway. Continued his research in Physics and received his PhD at the age of 25 from Sorbonne University, France After completing his PhD returned back to Iran. Dr. Hessaby was polymath, he studied different fields and continued lecturing at University of Tehran for three working generations. He died in the year 1992 at Geneva, Switzerland and is buried in Tafresh, Iran.
What makes him a great mind is his well-known theory of â€œInfinitely extended particlesâ€. Dr Hessaby met with Dr Albert Einstein and he was the only Iranian who closely worked with him. He researched on his theory in Princeton, Chicago and preformed many different experiments to verify his theory. He published the results of his research in 1946 at Princeton University. His theory â€œInfinitely extended particlesâ€ is well known among scientists. Einstein once said about him that â€œOne day he will change the direction of physicsâ€. In 1973 the medal of â€œCommandeur de la Legionâ€, Franceâ€™s greatest scientific medal was awarded to him for his great theory. One of the great things he did was the modification of Newtonâ€™s law of gravity and Columbusâ€™ law. In the field of Modern Physics he published 23 research papers and many books which include, Electrodynamics, Electric Eye, Viewpoint in Physics, Magnetic Eye, Solid State Physics and Quantum View.
Dr. Hessaby can be considered a great mind because of his endless desire for knowledge that led him to study and master several fields of science. He studied and researched in different subjects and was able to make great contributions in most of them. He also taught different subjects at various universities and gave new and interesting ideas in each of them. Dr Hessaby was a great person both in the history of the science and for the modernization of his country, Iran. He knew eleven different languages, such as Persian, English, French, Arabic, German, Italian and Greek.
What makes Dr Hessaby unique is the numerous services he rendered for his country, such as establishment of Tehran University, the teachers collage, the first meteorological station and radiological center. He also founded the space research center, the geophysics institute and the satellite tracking observatory center of Iran. It is interesting to know that Dr Hessaby also mastered Persian literature, played piano and violin and established the first Iranian institute of music. Dr Hessabyâ€™s life, his struggles, his tireless and intense interest in the quest of science as well as his deep interest in teaching the youth, and his commitment to the scientific progress of his country provides a living example and model for the students of science all over the world.
A museum has been established by his family, colleagues and students in order to value his 60 years of scientific, educational and cultural activities.