Rutgers University Department of Physics and Astronomy

Soluyanov Best Paper Prize in Condensed Matter Physics

The Alexey Soluyanov Prize in Condensed Matter Physics was established in memory of Alexey Soluyanov, a condensed matter theorist whose outstanding contributions in computational materials theory were cut short by his untimely passing in 2019.

Alexey received his doctorate from the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Rutgers University in 2012. Subsequently, he was a postdoctoral fellow, then senior scientist at ETH Zürich. In 2018, he became a Swiss National Science Foundation professor at the University of Zürich, leading his own research group. Alexey's work was characterized by curiosity, originality, perseverance and above all, a deep love of physics.

The Soluyanov Prize is awarded annually to one graduate student who is judged to have published the best refereed journal article in condensed matter physics prior to completing his or her final year of graduate study.


We are happy to announce that the prize fund was established with a generous gift of $6,000 from an anonymous donor.

If you wish to contribute, go to the physics "SUPPORT US" page and click on the last red item "Best Paper Prize in Condensed Matter Physics". (On the Rutgers Foundation pages this appears simply as the "Prize in Condensed Matter Physics.")

Eligibility and nomination procedure

The nominee must be a student in the Rutgers PhD program in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, working in either condensed matter theory or condensed matter experiment. The student must either be the first author of the paper, or in the case of alphabetical ordering, should have made the most significant contribution to the paper.

The nominated student should be in a stage prior to the completion of what would normally be his or her final year of PhD study. This will typically mean no later than the fourth, but it can extend to the fifth year as circumstances require (e.g., for experimental students with extended lab setup requirements). Students will normally be nominated by departmental faculty members, but they can also self- nominate. Nominations should be sent to the Graduate Program Director of the Department of Physics and Astronomy by March 15 of each year.

The nomination need only consist of the URL to the published article. No reference letter is necessary. The graduate student must be the lead author (typically first author, unless the author list was alphabetical, in which case please provide evidence that the graduate student led the work). The article must be published or in press.

The prize is awarded at the annual departmental awards banquet, usually in April of each year.

Selection procedure

The Graduate Program Director, acting as chair of the Graduate Studies and Life Committee, is responsible each year for reminding faculty to nominate students for the Soluyanov Prize, and for appointing an ad-hoc committee to select the winner. The committee normally consists of three members of the graduate faculty, consisting of two theorists and one experimentalist in even years and the reverse in odd years, with three-year terms.

Financial administration

The prize is set at $1,000 annually. However, this is subject to change depending on the amount raised and considerations of parity with respect to other departmental prizes.

The award is funded out of an account especially set up for this purpose by the Rutgers Foundation and administered by the Department of Physics and Astronomy. This fund is not an endowment; it is awarded annually until such time as the donated funds are exhausted.

Prize recipients

Click here to see a list of recipients of the Soluyanov Prize.

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This page is maintained by Prof. Ronald Gilman. Last updated March 2, 2020.