Jagadis Chunder Bose was born on November 30, 1858, at Mymensingh, now in Bangladesh. He joined St. Xavier’s College, Calcutta, India, in 1875 and passed the First Arts Examination of Calcutta University in 1877. He passed the B.A. Examination of Calcutta University in 1880. During 1880-1881 he studied Medicine in London for one year.
He had to give up medicine because of his health related problems. He entered Chst’s College, Cambridge in 1881, and was interested in physics. In 1884 he graduated from Cambridge with a Natural Tripos, and in the same year he also passed the B.Sc. Examination of London University. He was appointed Officiating Professor of Physics at the Presidency College, Calcutta, where he was made a permanent Professor later.
In addition to teaching he conducted his research there and communicated his research findings to the Royal Society of London through Lord Rayleigh the eminent physicist. It should be noted that Lord Rayleigh taught Bose physics at Cambridge, and later acted as his mentor during his research in physics. As mentioned earlier in the text, it was primarily on Lord Rayleigh’s recommendation that London University awarded the Doctor of Science degree to Bose.
Until 1900, Bose conducted much of his research in the area of millimeter and microwave physics [lo] where he is considered to be one of the pioneers. The semiconductor detector he developed grew out of his various investigations to establish the optical nature of electromagnetic waves.
He retired from the Indian Educational Service in November, 1915, and was appointed an Emeritus Professor of the Presidency College with full salary for a period of five years. Knighthood was conferred on him in 1917. In 1917, Bose founded the Bose Research Institute in Calcutta, which is the first of such an
institute in India.
Bose is considered to be the initiator of scientific research tradition in India. He died on November 23,1937, at the age of 79. Bose was a prolific writer. He also traveled frequently to Europe and the United States on various missions, and he often gave technical lectures.
On a personal level, Bose believed in the free exchange of scientific knowledge, and he strongly believed that knowledge grows by sharing it with fellow scientists. The idea of commercialization of science was so repugnant to him that in the founding charter of the Bose Research Institute he included a clause so that no member of his institute may be allowed to apply for a patent for an idea and/or device that he or she developed. He was also a humanist.