In 1898, Marie Curie, née Sklodowska, discovered two new elements: polonium and radium. Here’s the story behind the discovery. We celebrate Marie Curie’s 150th birthday this week.

Marie Curie was a Polish and naturalized-French physicist and chemist who conducted pioneering research on radioactivity. She was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, the first and only woman to win twice, the only person to win a Nobel Prize in two different sciences, and was part of the Curie family legacy of five Nobel Prizes. She was also the first woman to become a professor at the University of Paris, and in 1995 became the first woman to be entombed on her own merits in the Panthéon in Paris.

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