Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar (October 19, 1910 - August 21, 1995) was an India-born American astrophysicist, who received the Nobel prize in physics for his work on the theoretical structure and evolution of stars. Chandrasekhar's father`s brother, physicist C V Raman was also a Nobel laureate in physics.
Chandrasekhar attended the Hindu High School, Triplicane, Madras, during the years 1922-25. Subsequently, he studied at Presidency College from 1925 to 1930, obtaining his bachelor's degree, B.Sc. (Hon), in Physics in June 1930. In July 1930, Chandrasekhar was awarded a Government of India scholarship to pursue graduate studies at the University of Cambridge, where he was admitted to Trinity College. In the summer of 1933, Chandrasekhar was awarded his Ph.D. degree at Cambridge, and the following October, he was elected to a Prize Fellowship at Trinity College.
He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1983 for his studies on the physical processes important to the structure and evolution of stars. Chandrasekhar's most famous success was the astrophysical Chandrasekhar limit. The limit describes the maximum mass of a white dwarf star, or equivalently, the minimum mass, above which a star will ultimately collapse into a neutron star or black hole. The limit was first calculated by Chandrasekhar in 1930.
He was also named a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1944. He won the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society in 1953. The Indian Government also conferred the Padma Vibhushan on him. He also won the Copley Medal, the highest honour of the Royal Society, in 1984 and was declared an Honorary Fellow of the International Academy of Science in 1988. In 1999, NASA named the third of its four 'Great Observatories' after Chandrasekhar. The Chandra X-ray Observatory was launched on July 23, 1999. Chandrasekhar served on the University of Chicago faculty until his death.