Edgardo (Eddie) Browne-Moreno – In Memoriam

(1939 - 2022)

Edgardo (Eddie) Browne-Moreno was born in 1939 in Paraguay, of an American father and Spanish mother. He received both his BS degree (1963) and PhD (1970) in physics from the Instituto Balseiro, University of Cuyo, Argentina, and worked with Frank Asaro at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) for his PhD thesis.

Eddie joined the Isotopes Project at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) in the mid-1970s. He was one of the Principal Author of the Table of Isotopes, 7th Edition, 1978, as well as prime author and motivator of the Table of Radioactive Isotopes, 1986, a book containing re-evaluated decay schemes of all known radioactive nuclei. These monumental works are still used and cited by nuclear scientists worldwide. He was one of the founding members of the Decay Data Evaluation Project, based in BNM-CEA/LNHB, Saclay, France.

Eddie evaluated a vast number of mass chains for the Evaluated Nuclear Structure Data file (ENSDF), and actively participated for almost 40 years as a key member of the International Nuclear Structure and Decay Data Network under the auspices of the IAEA and with the support from the U.S. Nuclear Data Program of the DOE. His extensive expertise lay in the evaluation of decay data, along with his relentless interest in uncertainty propagations through consideration of their covariances. He mentored numerous new ENSDF evaluators, and introduced many in Latin America to nuclear structure work. Eddie was a visiting professor at the School of Nuclear Engineering, Bariloche, Argentina, for the academic year 1980. Although Eddie retired in 2002, he continued working until 2019 on a part-time basis under contracts with LBNL, BNL (Brookhaven National Laboratory), and UCB (University of California at Berkeley). He authored 98 scientific publications which have received over 3000 citations to this date.

Eddie was a fine human being, incredibly humble, extremely friendly, soft spoken, and a person with a great sense of humor. From our own personal experiences, we always appreciated that he would go out of his way to welcome the many visitors and co-workers to the Isotopes Project, and help them to feel at home in Berkeley. He loved to walk the hallways of our lab, and always had kind words and helpful suggestions for the students and colleagues he encountered along his way. He had a love for languages and sought similarity in their origin, and also loved to play the piano and accordion. He was always ready to help and never spoke ill of anyone. Over all a life well lived!

Eddie is survived by his wife Magdalena and their three sons Guillermo, Ernesto, and Gerardo. He loved them a lot and was very proud of them.

Eddie will be greatly missed.

With love and respect,

Colleagues and Friends

We reflect with affection on our long-standing collaboration with Eddie and remember him as a driving force in decay data evaluation, in particular his involvement in the Decay Data Evaluation Project (DDEP).

About 30 years ago, Nelcy Coursol and Marie-Martine Bé at LNHB were having discussions with Eckart Schönfeld at PTB to restart decay data evaluations for metrology purposes. During an IAEA meeting, Eddie and Richard Helmer came to them and proposed to create a specific working group, which matured into the DDEP. The first meeting took place in 1995 at the ICRM conference in Paris, with the immediate participation of Valery Chechev from KRI. Eddie’s contribution was essential for providing advice, reviews and promoting rigour in the evaluation process. Eddie was also keen on facilitating the interface with NSDD evaluators, which was already quite difficult at that time. Taking over after Richard’s disappearance, he coordinated DDEP for a number of years until his formal retirement from Berkeley. We have fond memories of the several DDEP workshops he attended in Europe, in particular Paris, Bucharest and Madrid.

As others have noted, Eddie was always the first to pass on his wisdom, or take under his caring wing, young (and also those not so young) new evaluators. With his pioneering work in publishing the Table of Isotopes, and his many evaluations published in Nuclear Data Sheets, he leaves behind an extensive legacy of high quality scientific publications.

We are all united in sending our thoughts and condolences to Eddie’s family and friends.

A very kind gentleman has left us and he will be sorely missed.

With kind regards,

Marie-Martine Bé, Vanessa Chisté, Christophe Dulieu, Mark A. Kellett, Sylvain Leblond and Xavier Mougeot