Why Ernest Rutherford is called the father of nuclear physics?

Ernest Rutherford is considered to be the father of nuclear physics because his research has played a key role in the current understanding of the nuclear level structure of atoms.

     Rutherford worked on radioactivity, coining the terms ‘alpha’ and ‘beta’ to describe the two different the two different types of radiation emitted by uranium and thorium.

     He also observed that radioactive material took the same amount of time for half of it to decay. This became known as its ‘half life’. Rutherford and his students successfully conducted the first experiment in splitting an atom, and also discovered the 104, rutherfordium, is named after him. Interestingly, even thought his research was in the field of nuclear physics, he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1908.

      The Rutherford model of the atom was simplified in a well known symbol, showing electrons circling around the world as a symbol for atoms and atomic energy in general.