Lederman’s Nobel Medal Auctioned Off

By way of Real Clear Science I came across this article- Physicist’s Nobel Prize up for Auction; $325,000 Minimum Bid. The online auction, conducted by Nate D. Sanders Auctions, ended last night with the medal fetching $765,002.00.

The opening line from the Certificate of Authenticity- signed by Lederman- emphasis mine-

The 1988 Nobel Prize in Physics, awarded to particle physicist Leon Lederman for his discovery of the muon neutrino, a particle 200 times the size of an electron.

I sent the auction house an email informing them of the error- the muon neutrino is actually smaller, mass-wise, than an electron by a factor of approximately one million. I never heard back; you would think that any factual error on a Certificate of Authenticity would be a concern. I guess a large commission and a 20% buyer’s premium is more important than scientific accuracy.