Rutgers Physics News
Saurabh Jha used data from Rutgers' share of of the Southern African Large Telescope (SALT) to help identify the most luminous supernova ever discovered. The SALT data were used to measure the distance (redshift) of the supernova, called ASASSN-15lh and discovered by the All-Sky Automated Survey for Supernovae based at Ohio State University.
Two of Jha's former undergraduate students (Ben Shappee, Rutgers '09, and Tom Holoien, Rutgers '13, both summa cum laude graduates in Physics & Astronomy) helped discover the supernova as part of the ASASSN project. The results were published by Subo Dong (Peking University) et al. in the journal Science: http://science.sciencemag.org/content/351/6270/257
Read more at..
Len Feldman has been named a fellow of the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers), effective January 1, 2016. Each year, following a rigorous evaluation procedure, the IEEE Fellow Committee recommends a select group of recipients for elevation to IEEE Fellow. Less than 0.1% of voting members are selected annually for this member grade elevation.
The citation for Len reads: for contributions to semiconductor-dielectric interfaces for MOS technologies.
Len is Vice President for Physical Science and Engineering Partnerships, Director of the Institute for Advanced Materials, Devices and Nanotechnology and Distinguished Professor Physics and Materials Science & Engineering. With this new distinction he is now a Fellow of the IEEE, the Materials Research Society, The American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Vacuum Society and the American Physical Society.
The Academy of the Lincei, founded in 1603 by Federico Cesi, is the oldest scientific academy in the world; Galileo Galilei is counted among its first members.
Postdoc Matthew Walker won an LPC Distinguished Researchers Fellowship for 2016 and graduate student David Sheffield won LPC Graduate Scholar for 2016.
For more info..
Weida Wu (PI) , along with co-PI's Sean Oh, Peter Armitage [Johns-Hopkins], and Shengbai Zhang [RPI], have received a $2M NSF Emerging Frontiers in Research and Innovation (EFRI) Award entitled "2-DARE: Engineering novel topological interface states in 2D chalcogenide heterostructures." The team aims to engineer topological interface states residing at the boundary between a topological insulator and a conventional semiconductor. The research activities will address the challenges of materials synthesis, realization of optoelectronic and spintronic devices, and their characterizations.
Congratulations Weida and Sean.
The DOE has awarded $12 million to establish the Center for Computational Design of Functional Strongly Correlated Materials and Theoretical Spectroscopy, led by Gabi Kotliar and located at Brookhaven National Laboratory. The Center will have a node at Rutgers which will be led by Kristjan Haule, with Martha Greenblatt from Chemistry and Chemical Biology establishing an experimental component.
More information about the Center is available from..
Saurabh Jha has been listed by Thomson Reuters as among the Highly Cited Researchers of 2015 . This distinction places Saurabh among some of the most influential scientific minds. About three thousand researchers earned this distinction by writing the greatest number of reports officially designated by Essential Science Indicators as Highly Cited, ranking among the top 1% most cited for their subject field and year of publication, earning them the mark of exceptional impact.
Saurabh joins Sang Cheong who received the same distinction in 2014.
Greg Moore, Board of Governors Professor in the NHETC and the Department of Physics & Astronomy, is a 2015 recipient of the Dirac Medal, awarded by the International Center for Theoretical Physics (ICTP).
Greg joins a rarified list of previous winners, which includes Sasha Zamolodchikov, also BOG Professor in the NHETC and Department of Physics & Astronomy, and former NHETC member Juan Maldacena, now Professor at the Institute of Advanced Study at Princeton.
Moore, along Alexei Kitaev (California Institute of Technology), and Nicholas Read (Yale University) were recognized for their interdisciplinary contributions which introduced the concepts of conformal field theory and non-abelian quasiparticle statistics in condensed matter systems and applied these ideas to quantum computation. Their work has played a fundamental role in recent advances in our understanding of the quantum states of matter and quantum entanglement theory.
ICTP's Dirac Medal, first awarded in 1985, is given in honor of P.A.M. Dirac, one of the greatest physicists of the 20th century and a staunch friend of the ICTP. It is awarded annually to scientists who have made significant contributions to theoretical physics.
Matt is lead instrument scientist of the Pluto Energetic Particle Spectrometer Science Investigation instrument on board New Horizons.
Read more at:
Professor David Shih, faculty member in New High Energy Theory Center, has been selected to receive a 2015 Board of Trustees Research Fellowship for Scholarly Excellence. This award bestowed in recognition of David's outstanding scholarly accomplishments during his years at Rutgers, as documented in the evaluation that led to his promotion to Associate Professor.
Rouven Essig, former student of Scott Thomas who received his PhD in 2008, has received the 2015 Henry Primakoff Award for Early-Career Particle Physics. The citation reads "For seminal contributions to theoretical models of dark matter with new gauge interactions, and for leadership of the APEX experiment at the Jefferson Laboratory." Rouven is now an Assistant Professor at Stony Brook University.
Brian Dennis, Girsh Blumberg (Rutgers) and the department alumnus Vladimir Aksyuk (NIST), working with collaborators at ANL and U Colorado-Springs, report a technology that could result in optical switches with sub-square-micron footprints, potentially allowing switching fabrics on a chip with an unprecedented density. The article appeared in Nature Photonics
For the 6th consecutive year one of our majors, Aditya Parikh, has won the prestigious Goldwater Scholarship, given to only 300 science and engineering students across the whole nation. Aditya has been working with Sevil Salur, and he is majoring in both physics and astrophysics!
In addition to being our 6th winner in a row, Aditya is also our 8th winner in the last ten years.
This Award was established in 2003 by the China Scholarship Council to encourage research excellence and to recognize the achievements among Chinese students abroad. The award includes a $6,000 prize and a certificate of recognition. Yanan is one of only 39 Chinese students in our ten-state jurisdiction receiving this award.
Professor Alyson Brooks has been awarded an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship. The Sloan recognizes the most promising young researchers in America. Over 40 Sloan Fellows have later gone on to win Nobel Prizes. Alyson joins Professors John Paul Chou, Kristjan Haule, Valery Kiryukhin, Alex Morozov, David Shih, and Emil Yuzbashyan to make seven Sloan winners in our Department since 2001.
The Department of Physics and Astronomy is pleased to announce the establishment of the Robert A. Schommer Prize, to be awarded annually to a graduate student in the department for outstanding published research in astrophysics. The prize is funded by a private gift, and honors the legacy of former Rutgers Prof. Bob Schommer, who was a leader in the study of stellar populations in the Milky Way and other galaxies, an expert in astronomical instrumentation and observation, and a co-discoverer of the accelerating expansion of the Universe through measurements of distant supernovae. At Rutgers, Bob was a passionate advocate for the development and growth of research and graduate study in astrophysics, and this prize commemorates his far-reaching vision.
Graduate students Sean Kung and Weilu Zhang, postdoc Verner Thorsmolle, and Profs. Girsh Blumberg and Kristian Haule, working with collaborators in Los Alamos and Leiden University, have made a major step towards solving the 30-years old puzzle of so called "hidden order" in an exotic heavy fermion system.
Key to achieving this breakthrough was the combination of Blumberg's unique laser laboratory at Rutgers, a new generation of samples prepared at LANL and a novel tour-de-force DMFT calculation performed by Kristjan Haule and Gabriel Kotliar. The paper appeared in Science Express online prior to publication in the Science journal.
Read more at:
KAST is the South Korea's highest integrated think-tank for science and technology. Koreans or Korean-origin foreign nationals are eligible for the KAST fellows , and the total number of the fellows in five different areas should be <500. KAST chose 33 new members. Sang Cheong is one of seven new fellows in the area of Natural Science, and one of two new fellows in the area of Physics.
The Rutgers Physics & Astronomy Department is hosting a 2015 Conference for Undergraduate Women in Physics (CUWIP) from January 16-18. This is one of eight such conferences coordinated by the American Physical Society (APS) this year. It brings together leading female physicists and over 130 undergraduate women in physics to highlight career opportunities for women in physics and the contributions of women to physics.
Eva Halkiadakis is cited for "... her leadership in precision electroweak and top quark measurements at the Tevatron and searches for Supersymmetry at the LHC and for pioneering work in pursuit of new physics in multi-jet final states."
Valery Kiryukhin is cited for "... use of x-ray and neutron scattering to understand multiferroics, colossal magnetoresistance and low-dimensional magnetism."
Scott Thomas is cited for "... contributions to the careful analysis of data from experiments at hadron colliders, to the phenomenology of many theories of physics beyond the Standard Model, and to supersymmetry, inflationary cosmology, and quantum gravity."
Andrew Baker and Bob Bartynski have been elected Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). The AAAS selects its fellows "based on their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications."
Andrew's citation reads "for extraordinary contributions to scholarship in radio astronomy through innovative design of instrumentation, leadership of international collaborations and dedicated mentoring of students."
Bob's citation is "for seminal studies of electronic states at surfaces and interfaces, made possible by developing novel tools such as Auger Photoelectron Coincidence Spectroscopy and Inverse Photoemission."
You can read more at..
The Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics recognizes major insights into the deepest questions of the Universe.
The prize cites the collaborations' discovery that the universe is expanding at an accelerating rate, and the winners will share a $3,000,000 award!! The Breakthrough Prizes were founded by Sergey Brin and Anne Wojcicki, Jack Ma and Cathy Zhang, Yuri and Julia Milner, and Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan. The prizes aim to celebrate scientists and generate excitement about the pursuit of science as a career.
Rutgers astrophysics graduate student John Wu, who spent a month this summer as one of two Americans among the 24 participants in the Vatican Observatory Summer School, is the subject of a feature story in Rutgers Today:
$500,000 gift from an anonymous donor helps to establish the Peter Lindenfeld Graduate Fellowship in the Department of Physics and Astronomy. This gift is a special tribute to Professor Emeritus Peter Lindenfeld's tireless dedication to physics instruction. The fellowship will be used to support a Physics and Astronomy graduate student who embodies and exemplifies the teacher-scholar model of learning pioneered by Prof. Lindenfeld. The Department welcomes donations towards this fellowship so that it may further honor Peter Lindenfeld by extending the reach of this opportunity for graduate student support.
Nathaniel Craig, former member of the NHETC who recently started an Assistant Professor position at UC-Santa Barbara, has been named a 2014 Regional Award for Young Scientists Finalist by the Blavatnik Foundation. This recognition comes with an award of $10,000 in unrestricted funds.
Nathaniel, who was an NHETC postdoc from 2010-2012, and a research associate from 2012-2014, worked closely with David Shih and Scott Thomas on problems in high energy theory beyond the Standard Model and on collider phenomenology that is central to the experimental efforts at the LHC.
A team of astronomers, including Rutgers graduate student Curtis McCully (lead author) and Professor Saurabh Jha, used NASA's Hubble Space Telescope to find a companion star to a white dwarf which later exploded in a supernova. Their findings were published in the August 7, 2014 issue of the journal Nature.
Read more about the "Zombie Star" at:
Sang-Wook Cheong and Seongshik (Sean) Oh have received five year, $1.7M and $1.5M, respectively, awards from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation's initiative on Emergent Phenomena in Quantum Systems (EPiQS) through the Materials Synthesis Investigator Program.
The aim of this program is to boost discovery of new quantum materials: substances in which the collective behavior of electrons leads to many complex and unexpected emergent phenomena.
Sang and Sean are two of only twelve investigators nation-wide to receive Materials Synthesis Investigator Awards. Rutgers University is in good company with Stanford University, and Princeton University as the only institutions to receive multiple investigator awards.
The announcement of the awards:
notes: "Recognizing that the discovery of new materials and improvement in materials' quality are key drivers of progress in this field, we will dedicate significant funds to promoting and strengthening materials synthesis within the EPiQS initiative. "
Pankaj Mehta, Rutgers Physics & Astronomy PhD (2006), has been named a 2014 Simons Investigator. Pankaj, currently a Professor of Physics at Boston University, received the award for his theoretical work which "demonstrated the importance of interference between different signaling channels and provided a mathematical model of the concentrations of receptor cells, which adjust themselves in response to multiple and time-varying signals so as to respond optimally to environmental cues."
Pankaj wrote his thesis in theoretical condensed matter physics entitled "A scattering approach to quantum impurity models in and out of equilibrium" under the direction of Prof. Natan Andrei.
Pankaj joins our Prof. Rachel Somerville as one of the 2014 class of Simons Investigators.
A very nice account of the contributions to the early days of string theory made by the late Rutgers Physics and Astronomy Professor Claud Lovelace can be found at the following website:
- Medium.com article: Man who invented the 26th dimension
- Blog article with some follow-up clarifications
Prof. Lovelace bequeathed his entire estate to Rutgers University, endowing the Claud Lovelace Chair in Experimental Condensed Matter Physics and the Claud Lovelace Graduate Fellowship.
This list, which is comprised of 21 fields of science and is available at http://highlycited.com , represents some of the world's leading scientific minds. These researchers earned the distinction by writing the greatest numbers of reports officially designated by Essential Science Indicators as Highly Cited Papers, ranking among the top 1% most cited for their subject field and year of publication, and earning them the mark of exceptional impact.
Sang-Wook notes that his former PhD student, Yew San Hor, currently an assistant professor at Missouri University of Science and Technology, is also on the list.
Professor Sang-Wook Cheong is director of the Rutgers Center for Emergent Materials
Rachel Somerville has been named a 2014 Simons Investigator. She is one of only 16 mathematicians, theoretical physicist or theoretical computer scientists who have been selected as Simons Investigators in 2014. Rachel is cited for "... her contributions to the development of `semianalytic modeling' methods that combine computational and pencil-and-paper theory, and her use of these methods, to further our understanding of the physical mechanisms of the formation, structural evolution and nuclear activity of galaxies."
The Award includes annual research support of $100,000 for a period of 5 years, renewable for an additional 5 years.
Piers Coleman and David Vanderbilt were among 17 individuals named Simons Fellows Awardees in Theoretical Physics. This highly competitive award will allow Piers and David up to a semester long research leave with the objective to increase creativity and provide intellectual stimulation. Cornell University was the only other institution where two awardees were named.
Former colleague Glennys Farrar, now at NYU, is also among the awardees.
Congratulations Piers and David.
David Maiullo has been named an inaugural Fellow of the American Association of Physics Teachers. Fellowship in the AAPT is reserved for "individuals who have made an exceptional contribution to AAPT's mission to enhance the understanding and appreciation of physics through teaching."
David's work with our instructional program, his central role in the Faraday Lectures and Rutgers Day presentations, his tireless outreach activities to schools throughout the state and beyond, his increasing number of television appearances, and his presence at the World Science Festival in New York City are just a few of the activities that make him so deserving of this distinction.
Congratulations David, and thanks for being such a great ambassador for our Department and Rutgers University.
Joel Lebowitz has been named by the French Acadmie as the recipient of the 2014 Grande Medaille de L'Academie. This award is presented in chemistry or biology on odd years, and in physics or mathematics on even years.
The medal is awarded by the French Academy annually to a French or foreign scholar who has contributed decisively to the development of science, both for the originality of their research and by the stimulating international influence it has had in creating a true research discipline.
The Elsevier Journal, Annals of Physics, which presents original work in all areas of basic physics research, publishing papers on particular topics spanning theory, methodology, and applications, reserves this status for reviews who are in the top 10th percentile in terms of the number of reviews completed for the journal.
- The article, entitled "Transition from collectivity to single-particle degrees of freedom from magnetic moment measurements on 3882Sr44 and 3890Sr52" can be found here..
Rutgers astrophysics professor Saurabh Jha and graduate students Curtis McCully and Brandon Patel are on the CLASH (Cluster Lensing And Supernova survey with Hubble) team that has announced the discovery of gravitationally lensed Type Ia supernovae that can be used to measure how much dark matter is in a cluster of galaxies. The results from the CLASH team appears in the May 1, 2014 issue of The Astrophysical Journal.
Rutgers Condensed Matter Physics is ranked #15 in the nation among ALL PhD granting institutions, public or private.
Professor Daniel Friedan has been elected a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. The Academy is one of the nation's most prestigious honorary societies and a leading center for independent policy research.
Daniel is the only individual from Rutgers to be elected this year, and is the sixth member of our Department to be elected to the Academy, joining Eva Andrei, Tom Banks, Greg Moore, Karin Rabe and Sasha Zamolodchikov.
For the fifth year in a row, and the eleventh time since its inception in 1986, one of our majors has won the prestigious Barry Goldwater Scholarship. This scholarship is awarded to 300 students across the whole nation, majoring in the sciences or engineering.
The latest of our winners is astrophysics major Asher Wasserman, who has been doing research with Andrew Baker.
Physics major Alexandra "Alex" DeMaio received an Honorable Mention.
Alex has been working with Sevil Salur. Last summer she did a research internship at Caltech, and this coming summer she will do a prestigious internship at CERN.
Physics major Taylor Smith, who has been working with Steve Schnetzer, was also awarded a prestigious CERN internship and will be working there this summer.
- Amit Lath to Professor 1
- Emanuel Diaconescu to Professor 1
Congratulations Amit and Emanuel on your well-deserved promotions.
- Kiersten Ruisard '12 (now at Maryland);
- Carlos Vargas '12 (now at New Mexico State);
- Victoria Yu '12 (now at UCLA);
- Julia Gonski '14.
- Former major Tom Holoien '13 (now at Ohio State) received an honorable mention.
Professor Yuri Gershtein, faculty member in our high energy experiment physics group, will receive a Trustees Award for Excellence in Research in 2014 at a ceremony later this year. This award is the university's highest honor for distinguished research contributions.
Kam-Biu Luk, a former Rutgers Physics graduate student and currently a professor at Berkeley, has won a 2014 W.K.H. Panofsky Prize in Experimental Particle Physics. Established in 1985 by friends of W.K.H. Panofsky (who among his credits was a former director of the Stanford Linear Accelerator Laboratory and professor at Stanford) the $10000 prize is presented annually to a single researcher or researchers working on the same outstanding accomplishment in Experimental Particle Physics.
Professor Kam-Biu Luk was a former PhD student of Rutgers professor Thomas Devlin, who himself also won the Panofsky Prize in 1994.
Eugenia Etkina, Professor in the Graduate School of Education and member of our graduate faculty, has won the 2014 Millikan Medal of the American Association of Physics Teachers (AATP). The award recognizes educators who have made notable and creative contributions to the teaching of physics. The award recognized a number of Eugenia's achievements, in particular her role a co-creator of the Investigative Science Learning environment (ISLE) - an approach to teaching and learning physics that helps students learn physics by engaging in activities that mirror the practice of physics.
In addition to this award, Eugenia has received the AAPT Distinguished Service Citation in 2012, the 2012 New Jersey Distinguished Faculty Showcase of Exemplary Practices Award, 2011 Rutgers University Graduate School of Education Alumni Association Outstanding Faculty Teaching Award, 2010 Rutgers University Warren I Susman Award for Excellent Teaching, and the 2007 Rutgers University Graduate School of Education Alumni Association Outstanding Faculty Research Award.
Physical Review and Physical Review Letters began a program to recognize outstanding referees for their journals in 2008. This year, only 143 of the 60,000 referees for these journals were selected for this distinction.
Sang joins past winners: Elihu Abrahams, Eva Andrei, Jolie Cizewski, Piers Coleman, Charlie Glashausser, Gabi Kotliar and David Vanderbilt, as well as Eugenia Etkina from the Dept. of Education and member of our graduate program.
Professor Len Feldman has been named a Fellow of the Materials Research Society. Similar to the American Physical Society, the number of MRS fellows selected each year is capped at 0.2% of the society membership, so this is indeed a notable distinction.
The citation reads: "For innovative applications of ion beam analysis; seminal contributions to the elucidation of surface and interface structures; and distinguished service to the materials community."
Professor Sevil Salur has won a prestigious NSF CAREER award. The CAREER award is given in support of early career development activities with special emphasis on integrating research and education. This is the 12th such award to our department since 2004.
Professor John Paul Chou, has been awarded an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship. The Sloan recognizes the most promising young researchers in America. Over 30 Sloan Fellows have later gone on to win Nobel Prizes. John Paul joins Professors David Shih, Kristjan Haule, Emil Yuzbashyan, Alex Morozov, and Valery Kiryukhin to make six Sloan winners in our Department since 2001.
Eva Andrei has been elected as Chair-Elect of the Section on Physics of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Eva will serve as Chair-Elect ('14-'15), Chair (`15-`16) and Retiring Chair(`16-`17). The Section on Physics, of which our own Jolie Cizewski is a member-at-large, is one of 24 that comprise the AAAS.
The AAAS is an international organization with a mission to "advance science, engineering, and innovation throughout the world for the benefit of all people." Well known for publication of the journal Science, the AAAS works to fulfill its mission by, among other activities, enhancing communication, promoting integrity, strengthening support for science and technology enterprise, articulating for science on social issues, and promoting responsible use of science in public policy.
Her citation reads: "For contributions to the theory of frustrated antiferromagnets and glasses, ferroelectrics and heavy fermion materials."
APS Fellows are elected for exceptional contributions to the physics enterprise. The number of Fellows elected annually is no more than 1/2 of 1% of the Society membership, so Premi is indeed receiving a recognition of distinction.
Presented every three years by the American Mathematical Society, the prize honors a work or group of works that brings mathematics and physics closer together and that appeared within the preceding six years. The prize will be awarded on Thursday, January 16, 2014, at the Joint Mathematics Meetings in Baltimore.
Greg is honored for "his group of works on the structure of four-dimensional supersymmetric theories with extended supersymmetry." The prize citation reads: "[For] his works on supersymmetric solitons in a variety of contexts---including black holes in supergravity, branes in string theory, and monopoles in gauge theory---have led to an explanation of the wall-crossing phenomena in the BPS spectrum. Moore's research has injected new physical ideas and created new constructions in the mathematical fields of cluster algebras, integrable systems, and hyperkähler geometry."
Rutgers Physics & Astronomy postdoc Katherine Myers has received the American Physical Society Dissertation Award in Nuclear Physics for her thesis research on the Qweak experiment at Jefferson Lab, under the supervision of Prof. Allena Opper of The George Washington University. Only about a dozen such dissertation awards exist, so these are very selective awards. The Qweak experiment uses parity violating electron scattering to determine the weak charge of the proton.
At the Board of Governors meeting on December 3, 2013, Professors Eva Andrei and Karin Rabe were named Rutgers Board of Governors Professors of Physics. Board of Governors Professorships are awarded to individuals whose accomplishments are recognized nationally or internationally as being consistently and unusually outstanding at a level exceeding even the extremely high standards expected of faculty members who have earned Professor II designations at the University. These professorships recognize faculty members whose accomplishments are particularly outstanding and have earned the individual faculty member national or international distinction within the discipline.
Prof. Andrei is cited "her ground-breaking and highly creative contributions to the fields of low dimensional electronic systems and mesoscopic physics"
Prof. Rabe is cited for "her pioneering work in the development of computational methods for studying structural phase transitions in solids, and in the application of these methods for obtaining a deep understanding of the physics of ferroelectric materials"
Professor Ronald Gilman has been named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). The AAAS selects its fellows "based on their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications."
Professor Greg Moore has been awarded the Dannie Heineman Prize for Mathematical Physics by the American Physical Society. The prize recognizes outstanding publications in the field of mathematical physics. The citation reads "For eminent contributions to mathematical physics with a wide influence in many fields, ranging from string theory to supersymmetric gauge theory, conformal field theory, condensed matter physics and four-manifold theory."
Greg joins a distinguished list of previous Heineman Prize winners, including Professor Zamolodchikov, former Rutgers professor Nathan Seiberg, former NHETC post-doc Juan Maldacena, Stephen Hawking, and Nobel Prize winners Steven Weinberg, Kenneth Wilson, Aage Bohr, Murray Gell-Mann, and Gerard 't Hooft.
Craig is currently an Assistant Professor in the School of Applied and Engineering Physics at Cornell University.
Craig was also a Lucent Fellow in the Department from 2004 to 2006. He won the 2007 Graduate School Dissertation prize, and since then has received national distinction, receiving a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) in 2012, an NSF Faculty Early Career Development Award (CAREER) NSF, 2011 and an ARO Young Investigator Award in 2010.
Read more: http://www.macfound.org/fellows/890/
Kristjan Haule has been awarded a 2013 Blavatnik Award for Young Scientists from The New York Academy of Sciences. "The Blavatnik Awards celebrate innovative and impactful researchers age 42 or younger working in the life sciences, physical sciences, mathematics, and engineering." Read more about the Blavatnik Awards at the New York Academy of Sciences.
Karin Rabe has been elected a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. The Academy is one of the nation's most prestigious honorary societies and a leading center for independent policy research.
Karin is the fifth member of our Department to be elected to the Academy, joining Eva Andrei, Tom Banks, Greg Moore, and Sasha Zamolodchikov.
Junior physics major David Kolchmeyer has won the highly prestigious Barry Goldwater Scholarship. The scholarship is awarded annually to 300 students across the nation, across all of the natural sciences, math, and engineering.
- More info about The Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program..
- Read Rutgers News release..
Professor Eva Andrei appears in an article in Nature which discusses the gender gap in science.
Two Rutgers Seniors have been awarded Gates Scholarships for graduate study at University of Cambridge. One of the students, Kelvin Mei, is a physics major who spent last summer at the CERN laboratory in Geneva, Switzerland, conducting research in the search for the Higgs subatomic particle.
Rutgers is the only state university to have two students selected this year.
- Original article in Nature
- News and Views, Nature, "Hidden is More", by Qimiao Si
- Article by Matthew Francis at arstechnica.com
- Tendencias 21, Descubren un nuevo orden en un material de electronica cuantica
- Wissenschaft aktuell
- Electronics News, New order theorised for electronic polarizer
- Physicists find new order in quantum electronic material
About 25 Rutgers faculty, post-docs, and grad students are collaborators on CMS, one of the two LHC experiments which discovered the Higgs-like particle. Research Associate Felipe Menanteau and Professor Jack Hughes were leaders of the Chandra X-ray Observatory team which discovered El Gordo, the most massive and hottest galaxy cluster ever seen.
The American Mathematical Society has instituted a new Fellows Program in late 2012, similar to that of the American Physical Society. Joel Lebowitz, who has joint appointment between the Mathematics and Physics & Astronomy Department, and Greg Moore, were selected as members of the inaugural class.
More information can be found at http://www.ams.org/profession/ams-fellows/ams-fellows
- #1. Our high energy experimental and theoretical groups were major players in this, with 25 Rutgers faculty, staff, post-docs and students on the paper. Faculty are John Paul Chou, Yuri Gershtein, Eva Halkiadakis, Amit Lath, Sevil Salur, Steve Schnetzer, Sunil Somalwar and Scott Thomas.
- #4. Galaxy-cluster motion. This was based on data from the Atacama Cosmology Telescope (ACT), an NSF-funded project including Rutgers. Jack Hughes and Felipe Menanteau are co-authors of the Hand et al study.
- #9. Communication using neutrinos. The MINERvA experiment at Fermilab was used to detect a short message using neutrinos from the FNAL NuMI neutrino beam production line. The MINERvA experiment is the main research activity of Ronald Ransome (Department Chair) and his group.
Two of the Rutgers/U. Maryland condensed matter theory team that predicted this new insulator have Rutgers connections, Dzero, then a postdoc at U. Maryland, is a former Rutgers Postdoc, and Piers Coleman, is the Director of the Rutgers Center for Materials Theory.
Dave Maiullo and his
travelling Physics show is the topic
of a Rutgers News
article entitled: "A Dazzling Physics Show Provides Enduring Lessons"
The APS Committee on the Status of Women in Physics began a program in January 2012 to highlight exceptional female physicists. The award recognizes female physicists who have positively impacted other individuals' lives and careers. Jolie Cizewski was named Woman Physicist of the Month for November, 2012.
The full citation can be found here
Professor Eva Andrei's research is featured on the main Rutgers University website at http://www.rutgers.edu/about-rutgers/champion-graphene
For more information about Eva Andrei's work visit Andrei Group website.
CERN experiments have observed a particle consistent with the long-sought Higgs boson in the mass region around 125-126 GeV. The preliminary results were presented in Geneva on July 4, 2012. Rutgers Physicists have been very active in the search for the Higgs, the existence of which is predicted by the Standard Model.
For more info..
Professor Weida Wu has won a DOE Early Career Award. The five-year awards are designed to bolster the nation's scientific workforce by providing support to exceptional researchers during the crucial early career years, when many scientists do their most formative work. This is the 2nd DOE early career award won by one of our faculty (David Shih won one earlier). Weida also won an NSF CAREER award.
Professor Terry Matilsky has won the Richard H. Emmons Award from the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, which is awarded annually to an individual demonstrating outstanding achievement in the teaching of college-level introductory astronomy for non-science majors. Details can be found at http://www.astrosociety.org/membership/awards/awards.html.
Graduating senior astrophysics major Benjamin Forrest has won one of two 2011-12 American Eagle Outfitters Michael Tranghese Postgraduate Leadership Awards given across the entire BIG EAST Conference. The Tranghese Award honors academic excellence and comes with a $5000 scholarship that can be applied to postgraduate study, in Forrest's case at Texas A&M University. More details..
Professor Jerry Sellwood has won the Dirk Brouwer Award from the Division of Dynamical Astronomy of the American Astronomical Society. The Brouwer Award recognizes outstanding contributions to the field of dynamical astronomy, including excellence in scientific research, impact, and influence in the field, and excellence in teaching and training of students. Details can be found at http://dda.harvard.edu/.
Professors Eva Andrei and Sasha Zamolodchikov have been elected to membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. The AAAS is one of the nation's most prestigious honorary societies and a leading center for independent policy research. Founded in 1780, the AAAS counts more than 200 Nobel Prize laureates and 100 Pulitzer Prize winners among its fellows.
They join Greg Moore and Tom Banks to make 4 members of our Department in the AAAS.
Professor Eva Halkiadakis has won the Rutgers Board of Trustees Research Fellowship for Scholarly Excellence which honors faculty members who have recently been promoted with tenure and whose work shows exceptional promise. The fellowship includes a citation and a $2,000 research account.
Professor Andrew Baker has won the Presidential Fellowship for Teaching Excellence which honors newly tenured faculty members for outstanding teaching and scholarly work. The fellowship includes a citation and a $2,000 research account.
Junior physics major Kelvin Mei has won the highly prestigious Barry Goldwater Scholarship. The scholarship is awarded annually to 275 students across the nation, across all of the natural sciences, math, and engineering.
For more information, please visit..
Professor Gregory Moore has been named a 2012-2013 Simons Fellow in Theoretical Physics. Each year the Simons Foundation makes up to 20 of these awards in theoretical physics, enabling leaves which allow physicists to concentrate on their research.
For more information..
The neutrino mixing angle, θ13 , found to be sizable by the Daya Bay experiment in China. Professor Kam-Biu Luk of Berkeley is a Daya Bay co-spokesperson. He obtained his Ph.D. from Rutgers under Professor Tom Devlin.
For more information..
In 2008 Physical Review and Physical Review Letters began a program to recognize outstanding referees for their journals. Of the 45,000 active referees, about 150 are recognized each year for their unpaid (and unacknowledged) work in maintaining the high standards of these most prestigious journals.
This year Eva Andrei and David Vanderbilt have been recognized as outstanding referees. They join past winners: Elihu Abrahams, Jolie Cizewski, Piers Coleman, Charlie Glashausser, and Gabi Kotliar, as well as Eugenia Etkina from the Dept. of Education and member of our graduate program.
Professor David Shih of the Department of Physics & Astronomy and New High Energy Theory Center has won a Sloan Fellowship. The Sloan recognizes the most promising young researchers in America. Over 30 Sloan Fellows have later gone on to win Nobel Prizes. David is the only winner from Rutgers this year, and joins Professors Kristjan Haule, Emil Yuzbashyan, Alex Morozov, and Valery Kiryukhin to make five Sloan winners in our Department since 2001.
Read more about this discovery..
Felipe Menanteau and Jack Hughes and their collaborators have discovered the most massive and hottest galaxy cluster ever seen in the distant universe. The cluster is located some 7 billion light years away from Earth. Observations were made using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and the NSF funded Atacama Cosmology Telescope in Chile. The galaxy cluster known as ACT-CL J0102-4915 has been nicknamed "El Gordo" (meaning "the big one" in Spanish) by the researchers who discovered it.
Read more about this discovery:
- Rutgers Research Highlights
- European Southern Observatory official press release
- NASA/Chandra official press release
- BBC News
- Daily Mail (UK)
- CBC News
- Earth & Sky
- Interview on NPR's "All things considered"
Professor Claud W. Lovelace has made a $1.5 million pledge to fund a new faculty position in the Department of Physics and Astronomy. This is the first gift toward a $27 million challenge grant to establish 18 endowed chairs at the university. The gift will fund a position named the "Professor Claud Lovelace Endowed Chair in Experimental Condensed Matter Physics.
Read more about the gift...
- For more info, see http://dpfnewsletter.org
Rutgers has been awarded a $2.3M MRI grant that will bring a "first of its kind" nanoscale ion beam facility to Rutgers campus. The principal investigator is Professor Torgny Gustafsson. Co-PI's on the project are Professors Eva Andrei and Len Feldman, and Professors Laura Fabris and Adrian Mann from Materials Science and Engineering.
Together with other recent NSF awards this instrument will provide new nano-scale capability and establish Rutgers as a national center for nano-scale microscopy. When complete, the facility will be the base of a multi-user center for ion microscopes providing excellent hands on opportunities for Rutgers students and researchers, the broader academic community as well as New Jersey industries.
Professor Carlton Pryor and Society members Viraj Pandya, Chris Carroll, Madison Hagar, and Garth Malcolm shared interesting stories about the Cosmos and set up three telescopes for young children and their parents to view the Moon through.
Rutgers professor Saurabh Jha was a graduate student on a team led by today's Nobel Prize in Physics winner Brian Schmidt, who shares half of the prize with Adam Riess, lead author of the seminal report on the expansion of the galaxy (Astronomical Journal, v. 116, p. 1009, 1998).
Team members observed bright exploding stars at the edges of the universe, gauging how far away they were and how fast they were receding, reaching the conclusion that the universe is continuing to expand. Since then, Jha has continued to work on observing these exploding stars, called type 1a supernovae, measuring their distance and speed with increasingly higher precision. His work has contributed to the confidence that scientists have in the conclusions drawn from that original 1998 study.
Read more about Professor Jha:Read more about the Nobel Prize for Physics..
Professor Eva Halkiadakis has been appointed a co-convener of the Supersymmetry Search group of the CMS experiment of the Large Hadron Collider. In this capacity, she will lead CMS's supersymmetry search teams of leading scientists from the world's major universities.
Professor Eric Gawiser has won a prestigious NSF CAREER award. The CAREER award is given in support of early career development activities with special emphasis on integrating research and education. This is the 11th such award to our department since 2004.
The announcement can be found at http://www.ictp.it/news/2011-dirac-medal.aspx
Professor Eric Gawiser is part of a collaboration which discovered evidence that black holes were common in the early universe. The discovery was announced by NASA June 15, 2011 (Read NASA announcement) and Eric was profiled in Rutgers Today (Read article)
Professor Mark Croft helped develop a new battery technology with GE, profiled in the Discovery & Innovation site of the Department of Energy Office of Science as published in the Journal of Power Sources (view PDF). Based on the successful collaboration, GE has a joint proposal with Rutgers for the creation of a new beam line at the National Synchrotron Light Source.
Professor Sang-Wook Cheong was named Board of Governors Professor at the June 14, 2011 meeting of Board of Governors. Board of Governors Professorships are awarded to individuals whose accomplishments are recognized nationally or internationally as being consistently and unusually outstanding at a level exceeding even the extremely high standards expected of faculty members who have earned Professor II designations at the University. These professorships recognize faculty members whose accomplishments are particularly outstanding and have earned the individual faculty member national or international distinction within the discipline.
Assistant professor Eva Halkiadakis has been awarded an LHC Physics Center Fellowship for the 2011-12 academic year. She joins current fellow John Paul Chou who will be an assistant professor at Rutgers starting fall 2011. More information on the LPC program can be found at http://lpc.fnal.gov/fellows/index.shtml
Professor Saurabh Jha won the 2010-2011 Bart J. Bok prize from the Harvard Department of Astronomy. It is awarded annually to a Harvard Astrophysics Ph.D. recipient 35 or younger for outstanding research.
He received the award for "outstanding work and keen insight in crafting methods to make supernovae into sharp tools for measuring the universe."
Saurabh gave the Bok Prize Lecture at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center on May 5.
Professors Gregory Moore and Thomas Banks have been elected to membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences , one of the nation's most prestigious honorary societies and a leading center for independent policy research. Founded in 1780, the AAAS is one of the most prestigious honorary societies and counts more than 200 Nobel Prize laureates and 50 Pulitzer Prize winners among its fellows.
Junior physics major Kiersten Ruisard has
won the highly prestigious Barry
Goldwater Scholarship. The scholarship is awarded annually to 275 students
across the nation, across all of the natural sciences, math, and
engineering. For more information, please visit the Barry M. Goldwater
Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program website at
Professor Eva Andrei's work on graphene has been spotlighted at the physicsworld.com website.
Professor Jack Hughes and postdoctoral researcher Kristoffer Eriksen have made the discovery of a pattern of X-ray "stripes" in the remains of an exploded star. Their work used observations of the Tycho supernova remnant made with NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory.
The work of Eva Andrei has been recently highlighted in Physics-spotlight of Physical Review Letters at the American Physical Society. The groundbreaking paper provides "experimental proof of the influence of twisting on the band structure of bilayer graphene."
Rutgers University astrophysics major, Samia Bouzid, while participating in a summer research program in Arizona, was on a research team that unexpectedly discovered two novae in the Andromeda Galaxy.
In 2008 Physical Review and Physical Review Letters began a program to recognize outstanding referees for their journals. Of the 45,000 active referees, about 150 are recognized each year for their unpaid (and unacknowledged) work in maintaining the high standards of our most prestigious journals.
Among this year's winners are:
- Charles Glashausser
- Gabi Kotliar
- Eugenia Etkina (a member of our Graduate Program and faculty member in the Department of Education)
Read more at the APS website
Piers Coleman and collaborators from Rice and Tokyo have found a new material that is "intrinsically quantum critical with very simple behavior." The research may have discovered an exotic new phase of matter known as the "critical strange metal" phase. Read more about this ground-breaking discovery below:
More information available at:
The AAAS has announced that Eva Andrei and Karin Rabe have been named fellows of the AAAS. The American Association for the Advancement of Science is an international non-profit organization dedicated to "advance science and serve society". Amoung the publications published by AAAS is it's journal Science. Professors Andrei and Rabe will be recognized for their contributions to science, along with other new fellows, at the Feb 19 2011 AAAS Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C.
More information can be found at:
- Information about the 2010 Faraday Christmas Children's Lecture...
- Listen to David Maiullo's "The Core 90.3" radio interview (mp3 file)...
- Article from MyCentralJersey.com...
Steve Schnetzer was named this year as a Fellow of the American
Physical Society. The citation reads: "For his work co-founding
the AMY detector collaboration, at which he and his student made
powerful quantitative tests of quantum chromodynamics, and for his
work on experimental particle physics
hardware, especially his pioneering work on diamond-based detectors.".
Noemie Koller has been awarded the 2010 Nicholson Medal for Human Outreach. The citation reads "For unselfish commitment to advocating the freedom of scientists around the world and for leadership in fostering equal opportunities for women in science."
Eugenia Etkina, Professor of Education and member of the Graduate Program of Physics and Astronomy, has won the Science Prize for On-Line Technology Resources of the AAAS, a prize for the best on-line materials in science education.
Jack Hughes, Felipe Menanteau and collaborators at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile have discovered new galaxy clusters revealed by cosmic "shadows." Their discovery is published in the November 10 issue of the Astrophysics Journal.
Professor Alexander (Sasha) B. Zamolodchikov has won the 2011 Lars Onsager Prize of the American Physical Society. The citation reads "For outstanding contributions to theoretical physics, and especially for the remarkable ideas that they introduced concerning conformal field theory and soluble models of statistical mechanics in two dimensions."
Sharing the prize were Alexander A. Belavin of the Landau
Alexander M Polyakov of Princeton University
The Aresty Center
has awarded a travel scholarship to physics
senior Sean Yeager. He is writing his honors thesis on search for
supersymmetry under Prof. Sunil Somalwar. Sean has previously
received research fellowships from the department as well as the
Professor Sang-Wook Cheong is coauthor of an article appearing in the
October 2010 issue of Physics Today entitled Multiferroics:
Past, present, and future. Read the article (subscription required)
Professor Vitaly Podzorov, along with postdoctoral researcher Hikmat Najafov, graduate students Bumsu Lee and Qibin Zhou, and Leonard Feldman, director of the Rutgers Institute for Advanced Materials, Devices and Nanotechnology (IAMDN), have been published in Nature Materials. Their paper entitled "Observation of long-range exciton diffusion in highly ordered organic semiconductors" discusses a newly discovered property in a material that may lead to efficient and inexpensive plastic solar cells.
Professor Philip Batson, with co-PI's Sang Cheong, Fred Cosandey (Materials Science and Engineering), Jing Li (Chemistry and Chemical Biology) and Ondrei Krivanek (Nion Corp.) have been recognized in the report http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/100-Recovery-Act-Projects-Changing-America-Report.pdf (project 46) as one of 100 projects funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act which are helping to transform America. The project will make Rutgers a leading university for electron microscopy.
Professor Vitaly Podzorov has been awarded a
prestigious NSF CAREER award.
This is the National Science Foundation's most prestigious award in
support of early
career development activities with special emphasis on integrating
education. The award provides long term stability (5 years) for young
Vitaly received the award in 2009, we apologize for the delayed
This makes this the 10th NSF career award to our department in the past
Undergraduate Physics student Edward Lochocki is one of three
Rutgers students to win a prestigious Goldwater Scholarship.
He is majoring in Physics and Mathematics and is interested in a
career in academia. More info
Professor Jolie Cizewski's recent work with her former postdoc, Kate Jones, now a professor at University of Tennessee, has attracted great notice. They studied the structure of the doubly magic tin-132 nucleus through the addition of a neutron to form tin-133. The results impact on the r-process which produces heavy nuclei in supernova explosions.The work was published in Nature, one of only a few papers a year from the department to appear in that journal. The work has been described in
Professor Andrew Baker has been recommended for a prestigious NSF CAREER award. This is the National Science Foundation's most prestigious award in support of early career-development activities with special emphasis on integrating research and education. The award provides long term funding stability (5 years). This is the 9th such award to our department during the past six years. (8/4/2010)
Former Rutgers student Marta Losada, as been elected President of Antonio Narino University, Bogota, Colombia. Dr. Losada received her Ph.D. from Rutgers in 1996, under the supervision of Professor Glennys Farrar.
Professor Chuck Keeton will receive two awards from
the University at a reception on May 5, 2010. One of the awards is a
Board of Trustees Fellowship for
Scholarly Excellence. The other award is a Presidential Award
for Teaching Excellence.
Congratulations go out to Chuck for his many wonderful contributions to our department and our university.
At the April 15 meeting, the Board of Governors approved the promotion
of Misha Gershenson to Professor II, and Yuri Gershtein
and Chuck Keeton to Associate Professors with tenure.
Warmest congratulations to Misha, Yuri and Chuck for these richly deserved promotions!!
Professor Jolie Cizewski has been elected Member-at-Large for the Section on Physics of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Her term started February, 2010.
Professor Eva Andrei will receive the Trustees Award for Excellence in Research at a ceremony on May 5, 2010, recognizing her widely known and highly appreciated work on graphene. This award is the university's highest honor for distinguished research contributions. It is the second year in a row that this award goes to our department - Jack Hughes won last year.
Junior physics major Ed Lochocki has won the highly prestigious Barry Goldwater Scholarship. The scholarship is awarded annually to 300 students across the nation, across all of the natural sciences, math, and engineering. For more information, please visit the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program website at http://www.act.org/goldwater/.
Professor Yuri Gershtein has been selected to receive a 2010 NSF CAREER award. This is the National Science Foundation's most prestigious award in support of early career-development activities with special emphasis on integrating research and education. The award provides long term funding stability (5 years). This is the 8th such award to our department during the past three years.
Andrei Malashevich has won one ofthe six annual Dean's awards for outstanding research, based on his dissertation "FIRST-PRINCIPLES STUDY OF ELECTRIC POLARIZATION IN PIEZOELECTRIC AND MAGNETOELECTRIC MATERIALS", under the guidance of Professor David Vanderbilt. The award includes a prize of $1000.
Brian Tice was selected to attend the 2010 Nobel Laureate Meeting at Lindau June 27-July 2. About 600 students in chemistry, physics, and medicine/physiology are chosen in a world-wide competition. Over 60 Nobel Laureates will attend the meeting to give lectures and meet with the students. Brian is a student of Professor Ron Ransome.
Physics support specialist David Maiullo is featured in Rutgers Magazine. As the author of the article writes: David "takes hard-to-understand scientific principles and creates ways to make audiences sit up and pay attention". Read more..
Assistant professor David Shih has won the DOE Early Career Award
(the DOE equivalent of the NSF CAREER award) for his proposal:
"Supersymmetry Breaking, Gauge Mediation and the LHC".
More information about the Early Career Research Program can be found at the U.S. Department of Energy website.
A recent APS Phys Rev E paper, entitled "Diffusion of
scientific credits and the ranking of scientists" describes a
method for ranking publications and authors, and then compares the system
to the assignments of major career awards. The authors discuss that while
this ranking system uses the Phys Rev database, it can be applied to other
disciplines as well. By visiting http://www.physauthorsrank.org you can enter a name and
receive the rank based on their algorithm.
On page 7 of the article two tables show the top 20 scientists ranked according to their method for two years, 1973 and 2004. Rutgers Physics professor Claud Lovelace ranked 14th according to their system in 1973 and professor David Vanderbilt ranked 13th in 2004 on these charts! This provides further evidence of the highly influential work being performed in the department.
Professor Andrew Baker is spending the Fall semester as a visiting scientist at the Atacama Large Milimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) project in Chile. This large array of telescopes is currently being constructed and tested and will be used for observations in 2011.
George Horton, Professor II of physics, passed away Nov 1, 2009, at the Robert Wood Johnson hospital in New Brunswick. George had been in poor health for some time, but his death still came as a surprise to his many friends.
George received his Ph D in 1949 at Birmingham University in the UK, under Sir Rudolph Peierls. After doing a post-doc in Zurich, he moved to the University of Alberta in Canada in 1951. In 1960, he came to Rutgers as chair of the physics department at Douglass college. The spring semester 2010 would therefore have been his 100th semester here.
George was a condensed matter theorist with a specialization in lattice dynamics, particularly in strongly anharmonic crystals. As late as in 2003, he still published on this subject. He had a long and lasting impact on the department and on Rutgers. He was a popular and loved teacher and did important work related to the teaching of physics, both locally and on the national scene. He created the Physics Learning Center (now the MSLC), the Gateway program and was very active in forming the AAUP chapter at Rutgers. He was also the central figure in establishing an HMO at Rutgers, which very significantly improved the health benefits for all his colleagues here. He received many honors for his work, such as the Georgina Smith Award from the AAUP "For Creative and Distinguished Leadership", the presidential Award for Distinguished Public Service, the Sussman Award for Excellence in Teaching, Best Teacher of the Year Award and several more.
-Torgny Gustafsson, Physics & Astronomy Chair
"Physics: Charge break-up in graphene"
"Researchers confirm that charge carriers in graphene interact strongly with each other and exhibit collective behaviour manifesting as fractions of an electron's elementary charge. Graphene is expected to find a range of applications in future electronics and these findings are important for understanding its complex physical properties."
"When charge carriers such as electrons are confined to moving in a two-dimensional plane and subject to a perpendicular magnetic field, they can form new quasi-particles with a fraction of the electron's elementary charge. This is known as the fractional quantum Hall effect FQHE. Graphene could be considered such a perfect two-dimensional system because the carbon atomic constituents are arranged in a single plane. Its charge carriers are remarkably mobile and have been predicted to interact strongly with each other. But firm evidence of collective behaviour such as the FQHE has been difficult to obtain."
"Eva Andrei and colleagues report the experimental observation of FQHE using devices containing suspended sheets of graphene probed in a two-terminal measurement set-up. Their approach removes disturbances from impurities that would normally obscure the effects of electron interactions, and may explain why previous searches have failed."
More press releases and news articles:
|Science article||Physics World article||Rutgers Press Release|
|Google News||Polish news interia||Thaindian News|
Daniel Friedan, Professor II and a founding member
of the New High Energy Theory Center (NHETC) has won the
2010 Lars Onsager Prize of the American Physical Society,
one of the most prestigious prizes the APS awards. The citation reads:
For seminal work on the classification and characterization of two-dimensional unitary conformal field theories of critical states
Daniel shares this prize with Steve Shenker of Stanford University. Steve was also a founding member of the NHETC and a member of our faculty until the end of 1998.
Professor Sang-Wook Cheong is being honored by the
American Physical Society with the
2010 James C. McGroddy Prize for New Materials, one of
the most prestigious prizes the APS awards. The citation reads:
For groundbreaking contributions in theory and experiment that have advanced the understanding and utility of multiferroic oxides.
The prize consists of a cash award and a certificate. He shares this prize with Ramamoorthy Ramesh, UC-Berkeley, and Nicola Spaldin, UC-Santa Barbara (Nicola, a theorist, got her start in this field working with Karin Rabe of our department).
Rutgers Physics and Astronomy Assistant Professor Saurabh Jha has been selected to receive an NSF CAREER award. Professor Jha won the award for his proposal "CAREER: Supernova Cosmology and the Changing Sky". This is the National Science Foundation's most prestigious award in support of early career-development activities with special emphasis on integrating research and education. The award provides long term funding stability (5 years). This is the 7th such award to our department during the past two years.
Ron Ransome has received an award from the Department of Education for 5 fellowships under the Graduate Assistantships in Areas of National Need (GAANN) program. The fellowships are intended to support students with excellent records and financial need, with an emphasis on encouraging under-represented groups to pursue careers in areas of national need.
has been named to receive a
Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers. Chuck is
being recognized by the White House as an outstanding early career
researcher, the highest honor that a beginning scientist or engineer can
receive in the United States. The awards are given based on pursuit of
innovative research at the frontiers of science and technology and a
commitment to community service as demonstrated through scientific
leadership, public education, or community outreach.
Charles Keeton will receive his award in the Fall at a White House ceremony.
Former Rutgers postdoc, Dr. Kate Jones, has received a 2009 Outstanding Junior Investigator award from the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Nuclear Physics. She worked under the supervision of Professor Jolie Cizewski and is now at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. The award is given to exceptionally talented new physicists early in their careers to assist and help facilitate the development of thier research programs.
Professor Kristjan Haule has been awarded a Rutgers University Board of Trustees Research Fellowship for Scholarly Excellence, recognizing him as one of the university's most distinguished young faculty members. More about Kristjan Haule's work
Professor Jolie Cizewski has been named Outstanding Referee by the American Physical Society. The Outstanding Referee program expresses appreciation for the essential work that anonymous peer reviewers do for APS journals and to the physics community. Each year a small percentage of the 42,000 APS referees are selected and honored with the Outstanding Referee designation. Selections are made based on the number, quality, and timeliness of the referee reports as collected in a database over the last 20 years.
Professor Sunil Somalwar will receive the Rutgers Faculty Scholar-Teacher Award. This award honors faculty members who have made outstanding contributions in research and teaching, making visible the link between teaching and scholarship.
The American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) has selected David Maiullo as the recipient of a Distinguished Service Citation, to be awarded at the Summer 2009 meeting, in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The distinguished Service Citation is presented to AAPT members in recognition of their exceptional contributions to AAPT and physics teaching. More info
Assistant Professor Alex Morozov, who has a joint appointment in our department and in BioMaps, has won a Sloan Foundation fellowship. These two-year prestigious fellowships are given to early-career scientists and scholars of outstanding promise in recognition of distinguished performance and a unique potential to make substantial contributions to their field.
Assistant Professor Alex Morozov, who is in his first year on our faculty, has just received funding for his first grant proposal to NIH. His proposal was rated in the 99.5th percentile in the NIH study section (the highest in this section), where most of the proposals came from more senior scientists.
Sourabh Dube has been awarded the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory's 2009 Chamberlain Fellowship. This Fellowship honors Owen Chamerlain, who (along with others) discovered the antiproton in 1955 at the Berkeley Bevatron.
Rutgers Physics Assistant Professor Seongshik Oh has been selected to receive an NSF CAREER award. Professor Oh won the award for his proposal "CAREER: Atomically-Engineered Complex Oxides and their Heterostructures for Novel Electronic Functionalities". This is the National Science Foundation's most prestigious award in support of early career-development activities with special emphasis on integrating research and education. The award provides long term funding stability (5 years). This is terrific news, and is the 5th such award to our department during the past twelve months.
Associate Professor Valery Kiryukhin has won a Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Research Award from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation in Germany. Award winners are honored "for their outstanding research record and invited to spend a period of up to one year cooperating on a long-term research project with specialist colleages at a research institution in Germany." Valery is planning to be working with colleagues at the Max Planck Institute in Stuttgart.
Weida Wu, Rutgers Physics Department Assistant Professor, has been awarded an NSF CAREER award for his proposal: "CAREER: Nanoscale Magnetic Phenomena and Coercivity Mechanism in Layered Magnets with Extremely Large Anisortopy". This is the National Science Foundation's most prestigious award in support of early career-development activities with special emphasis on integrating research and education. The award provides long term funding stability (5 years). This is terrific news, and is the 4th such award to our department during the past twelve months.
David Vanderbilt was appointed Board of Governors Professor at the Board of Governors meeting on December 12, 2008 in Winants Hall. David's path breaking research, which has given him and Rutgers world wide acclaim, is matched by stellar accomplishments in teaching and service. Congratulations to David on this prestigious appointment.
Sang-Wook Cheong, Professor II of Physics and Donald H. Jacobs Chair in Applied Physics, has received the Korean Broadcasting System (KBS) Overseas Compatriots Award. The award is given to ethnic Koreans living overseas who have made a distinguished contribution in promoting the image of the people and culture of Korea. The award is for ten million Korean won, or about seven thousand US dollars, and KBS will produce a documentary on his life and achievements. Further information
Congratulations to Jack Hughes who has just become a fellow of the American Physical Society. This is a further sign of the great regard that Jack's work (and that of the entire astronomy group) is held in.
Len Feldman (Ph.D. 1967 under Gibson - Large Angle Elastic Scattering of Energetic Protons in Silicon Single Crystals) has been awarded the Graduate School Alumni Prize for Distinguished Accomplishments and Services in the Mathematical and Physical Sciences and Engineering. Len has recently rejoined the Department as the head of the IAMDN.
Kristjan Haule has received the CAREER award from the National Science Foundation. This award supports the early career-development activities of teacher-scholars who effectively combine research with education activities. This is the third such award given to our department for the academic year 2007/8, a record number. More about Kristjan's work
Junior astrophysics major Jennifer Van Saders has won the highly prestigious Barry Goldwater Scholarship. The scholarship is awarded annually to 300 students across the nation, across all of the natural sciences, math, and engineering. For more information, please visit the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program website.
Congratulations to Patrick O'Malley who will be receiving the Department of Energy National Nuclear Security Administration Stewardship Science Graduate Fellowship starting Fall 2008 for up to 4 years. He will be receiving a very competitive stipend, full tuition and fee remission, plus an account for his research. Patrick is one of only 4 recipients from across the country. A second-year graduate student, Patrick is doing research in low-energy experimental nuclear physics with Jolie Cizewski.
Charles Keeton has been awarded a CAREER award from the National Science Foundation. This award supports the early career-development activities of teacher-scholars who effectively combine research with education activities. More info is available from the NSF.
Professor Kristjan Haule has been awarded a 2008 Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fellowship award. These very competitive awards are given annually in seven fields. The award is intended to enhance the careers of the very best young faculty members in these fields of science. More about Kristjan's work
David Maiullo demonstrates standing waves in NY Times article which appeared on the web on Feb 19, 2008.   Watch NY Times video
Vladimir Aksyuk, Ph.D. 1999, under the supervision of Prof. Abrahams and Dr. Bishop of Lucent, has been selected for the graduate school award for distinguished accomplishment by an alumnus early in his career , for his contributions to telecommunications technology. Dr. Aksyuk is currently employed by Alcatel-Lucent Technologies.
Eric Gawiser has made some very interesting observations of small distant galaxies which are a step in the evolution of our own galaxy. He gave a news conference on January 8, 2008 at the American Astronomical Society meeting in Austin on Monday and the story has spread quickly. Related articles:
Eva Halkiadakis has received the CAREER award from the National Science Foundation. This award supports the early career-development activities of teacher-scholars who effectively combine research with education activities. More info is available from the NSF.
- Mark Croft is cited for "seminal contributions to correlated electron physics and electronic structure of rare earth and transitional metal compounds; novel applications of synchrotron radiation"
- Misha Gershenson is cited for "experimental studies of quantum transport and dephasing processes in disordered low-dimensional electronic systems."
- Matt Strassler is cited for "work extending the AdS/CFT gravity/gauge duality to QCD-like confining theories, and for insights into novel aspects of the physics of strongly coupled supersymmetric theories."
Emil Yuzbashyan, Assistant Professor in our department and a condensed matter theorist, has won a Packard Foundation fellowship. The Packard Foundation awards extremely competitive fellowships to outstanding junior faculty members in science and engineering. Only the most prominent universities in the US are allowed to nominate candidates and the competition is extemely tough. This year, out of the 20 fellowships awarded, only two were given in physics in the entire country (last year, none). This is the very first Packard award not just in our department but in any department at Rutgers.
Professor Karin Rabe
won the 2008 David Adler Lectureship Award of the American Physical Society.
This award was established to recognize an outstanding contributor in
materials physics, who is noted for the quality of his/her research,
articles and lecturing. The citation announcing
Karin's award reads:
"For research, writings and presentations on the theory of structural phase transitions and for the application of first-principles electronic structure methods to the understanding of technologically important phenomena in ferroelectrics"
Junya Yagi and Dmitry Hits were presented the Richard J. Plano Outstanding Teaching Assistant Awards at the recent Department Welcome Reception. This award, which includes a cash prize, is given annually to TAs who in the judgement of the faculty have demonstrated outstanding teaching excellence. Read more about the Plano Outstanding TA Award.
Incoming junior faculty, Saurabh Jha,
is a member of the supernova team
that was awarded this year's Gruber Prize in Cosmology.
Congratulations to Saurabh!"
Amit Lath and Anton Anastassov were cited in the July 24, 2007 NY Times article about the race for the (Higgs) "God Particle". The article about the "Race for the Higgs Boson" made the front page of the NY Times Online.
Vitaly Podzorov was recently interviewed by Thompson Scientific,
which has identified his group's highly cited papers in the forefront
of research on Organic Semiconductors.
Read the Interview.
The Essential Science Indicator Thompson Scientific is a resource that enables researchers to conduct ongoing, quantitative analyses of research performance and track trends in science. Covering a multidisciplinary selection of 11,000+ journals from around the world, this in-depth analytical tool offers data for ranking scientists, institutions, countries, and journals.
The Ho-Am Foundation has selected Professor Sang-Wook Cheong to be awarded one of five Ho-Am Foundation prizes this year. Cheong has won the prize for Science with a value of about 200 million won or about $200,000. It is sometimes referred to as the Korean Nobel Prize. The prize was awarded at a ceremony in Korea on June 1. The other areas are Engineering, Medicine, the Arts, and Community Service.
The foundation was set up in memory of the founder of the Samsung Group. The award honors "those who have made outstanding contributions to the development of science and culture and the enhanceof the welfare of mankind." Cheong is being honored for establishing a new paradigm in the field of the physical properties of emergent materials.
The 2007 Graduate School Dissertation prize was won by Craig Fennie. Craig did his research under the supervision of Karin Rabe, and is now a Nicholas Metropolis Fellow at Argonne National Lab. This is the second year in a row the award went to a physics student (last year Jeff Thomas, Jolie Cizewski's student, won).
Lev Ioffe has been awarded fellowship in the American Physical Society "For significant contributions to the theory of spin glasses without quenched disorder, disordered superconductors, high T_c superconductors and the discovery of Josephson networks with topological order parameters."
Joel Lebowitz has been awarded the Planck medal of the German Physical Society for his lifetime achievements. This is the most prestigious prize for theoretical physics awarded by the Society. The list of previous winners is truly impressive.
From the press release (Translated from the German) (Nov.11, 2006):
Max Planck medal goes into the USA
Awards of the German Physical Society
Bad Honnef, 15. November 2006 --- In the coming year, Joel L. Lebowitz,
head of the Center for Mathematical Sciences Research at the US-American
Rutgers University, is going to receive the Max Planck medal, the highest
honor for theoretical physics of the German Physical Society (DPG). Born
in former Czechoslovakia, the expert for statistical physics will be honored
for his lifetime achievements. The Stern-Gerlach medal ...
It follow sections pertinent to the two medals Section: Max-Planck-Medal 2007 Subtitle: highest DPG honor for theoretical physics Prof. Dr. Joel L. Lebowitz (76), Rutgers University, Center for Mathematical Sciences Research Piscataway, US State of New Jersey it follows the citation:
"for his important contributions to the statistical physics of equilibrium and
non-equilibrium systems, in particular his contributions to the theory of phase
transitions, the dynamics of infinite systems, and the stationary non-equilibrium
states. Furthermore he is going to be honored for his promoting of new directions
of this field at its farthest front, and for enthusiastically introducing several
generations of scientists to the field."
It follows a brief description of JLL's achievements:
Physics of many particles: Joel Lebowitz, born 1930 in former Czechoslovakia, receives this distinction for his lifetime achievement. Throughout his scientific career Lebowitz has been concerned with fundamental topics of statistical physics. This includes heat transport, magnetism and questions of hydrodynamics. Lebowitz also pondered the phenomenon of the `arrow of time.' This is about the question why time only progresses and why physical processes generally evolve only in one direction. All these works bear on the vast field of statistical physics. Its aim is to deduce macroscopic properties of many particle systems --- such as the pressure of a gas or the magnetization of a solid --- from microscopic (atomic) laws.
... This distinction consists of a gold medal
The award ceremony takes place in March 2007 during the central annual meeting of the DPG in Regensburg
Congratulations to Noemie Koller who is the recipient of the 2006 Distinguished Service Award of the Division of Nuclear Physics of the American Physical Society. She was recognized "For her sustained and exceptional contributions to the Division of Nuclear Physics and to the American Physical Society on behalf of the Division, for her creative promotion of education and the climate for women in nuclear science, and for her vigorous efforts to develop the Division's initial Nuclear Physics brochure and to fund the Bonner Prize." The award was presented at the meeting of the Division in Nashville in October of 2006.
First Light for the Rutgers Fabry Perot Instrument on the SALT Telescope. The Farby-Perot system of the Robert Stobie Spectrograph was used
for the first time on September 22, 2006 to acquire on-sky images with the
Southern African Large Telecope.
Read more (PDF)
The oscillation is explained by the Standard Model, and the value above is in accordance with it. However, there are many beyond SM models (supersymmetry for instance) that cannot avoid affecting this oscillation. So this result will help narrow the window for new physics. The details are in hep-ex/0609040. Read more at the CDF Web site at FermiLab
Kitta MacPherson of the Newark Star-Ledger had a story this morning: http://www.nj.com/search/index.ssf?/base/news-9/1159251134290850.xml?starledger?ntop&coll=1
Note an egregious mistake near the end: "For reasons of physics, the Higgs boson, which has much less mass, would likely be drawn to the heavier b quark in the meson." Oh, don't we wish the Higgs were that light! In fact, the Higgs boson has much MORE mass than the b quark. It is (probably) lighter than twice the top quark mass, so it will want to decay to the LIGHTER b quark. Assuming of course the Higgs is indeed what is responsible for breaking electroweak symmetry.
At this year's Graduate Student Organization sponsored Dept Welcome Reception, the Richard J. Plano Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award was presented to Vesselin Marinov and Brian Vancil.
The NJ Science Teachers Association and the NJ Science Education Leadership Association have selected Dave Maiullo to be awarded the NJAAPT Lifetime Contribution to Physics Education Award at the New Jersey Science Convention Awards Dinner October 11, 2006.
Emil Yuzbashyan has been awarded a prestigious CAREER award from the National Science Foundation. This award, given to the most outstanding young scholars, will provide substantial research support for the next five years.
According to the NSF web site, the Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program is a Foundation-wide activity that offers the National Science Foundation's most prestigious awards in support of the early career-development activities of those teacher-scholars who most effectively integrate research and education within the context of the mission of their organization. Such activities should build a firm foundation for a lifetime of integrated contributions to research and education.
Gabe Alba and Hsu-Chang Lu have won First Prize in the 2006 Apparatus Competition of the American Association of Physics Teachers. Their entry was entitled "Bend It Like Bernoulli" and demonstrated how a soccer ball is made to bend around a wall of defenders from a kicker imparting a spin to it.
|Society of Physics Students Outstanding Teacher Award:||Thomas Devlin|
|Richard J. Plano Dissertation Prize:||Juntai Shen|
|Richard T. Weidner Physics Prize:||Joseph Walsh|
|Mary Wheeler Wigner Memorial Scholarship:||Joseph Wolf|
|Robert L. Sells Scholarships:||Pablo Mosteiro|
|Herman Y. Carr Scholarships:||Anthony Barker|
|Noemie B. Koller Scholarships:||Kinga Partyka|
|Richard J. Plano Summer Research Internships:||Stanislav Solomovich|
|Summer Research Internship in |
Experimental High Energy Physics:
Professor Mohan Kalelkar has been selected to receive a Warren I. Susman Award for Excellence in Teaching. This award is Rutgers University's highest honor for outstanding and innovative performance in the classroom by a tenured faculty member. The award is named in memory of Professor Susman, a prominent cultural historian and popular teacher.
Professor Harry Kojima has been elected as Fellow of the APS for his work in Condensed Matter Physics for experimental discoveries of unusual low-temperature excitations and dynamics in quantum liquids and solids (especially superfluid 3He).
Congratulations go to Aaron Warren and Dr. Jeff Thomas. Aaron has won the Graduate School at New Brunswick award for outstanding teaching by a graduate student. Jeff, a student of Prof. Jolie Cizewski, has won the Graduate School at New Brunswick outstanding dissertation award.
Carlos Badenes, a post-doc in the astronomy group, has been awarded a Chandra Fellowship for 2006. This highly competitive, prestigious fellowship will support Carlos' research on supernovae and their remnants at Rutgers over the next three years.
Physics Support Specialist David Maiullo receives 2005 Excellence in Service Award. David provides access to a large number of physics demonstrations and helps make physics fun for students to learn and faculty to teach.
Professor Emil Yuzbashyan has just been named a Sloan Foundation Research Fellow for 2006. These awards are intended to enhance the careers of the very best young faculty members in specified fields of science. Currently a total of 116 fellowships are awarded annually in seven fields: chemistry, computational and evolutionary molecular biology, computer science, economics, mathematics, neuroscience, and physics.
Rutgers Professor Gabriel Kotliar has been awarded The 2006 Agilent Technologies Europhysics Prize, along with Antoine Georges, Walter Metzner, and Dieter Vollhardt, for the Development and Application of the Dynamical Mean Field Theory.
From the European Physical Society announcement:
The Agilent Technologies' Europhysics Prize for Outstanding Achievement in Condensed Matter Physics is an annual award, funded by donations from the Agilent Technologies' corporate contributions programs to the European Physical Society.
The Europhysics Prize is considered to be one of the most prestigious physics prizes presented in Europe. Eight previous winners have subsequently won Nobel Prizes for their work. Since 1975, the award has been given to leading scientists in nearly every internationally important area of condensed matter physics.
The award is given in recognition of recent work by one or more individuals in the area of physics of condensed matter, particularly work leading to advances in the fields of electronic, electrical and materials engineering, which, in the opinion of the Society's Selection Committee, represent scientific excellence. The Selection Committee consists of five members who are appointed by the Society and includes an Agilent Technologies' representative.
Agilent is proud to continue the tradition of funding the prize, a tradition started by HP in 1975. It includes a substantial cash award. Agilent sponsorship demonstrates its commitment to technical innovation, including fundamental physics.
The 2005 McMillan Award has been given to Rutgers Alumnus, Dr Peter Armitage. Armitage was a physics Major at Rutgers, graduating in 1994. The McMillan award is given annually to a to a young condensed matter physicist (theoretical or experimental) for distinguished accomplishments. Past recipients include many leading figures in condensed matter physics. Peter Armitage has been awarded this year's prize for "his crucial contributions to the field of angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy studies of electron-doped superconductors". High temperature superconductors are known to be doped Mott insulators - the "hole-doped" have been extensively studied throughout the 90s - but it is only recently that it has been possible to carry out detailed photo-emission studies of their close cousins, the electron doped cuprates. Armitage and co-workers at Stanford University were able to characterize the nature of the electronic excitations in neodinium cerium cuprate, and show that the electron-electron interaction effects were weaker than in their hole-doped counterparts. Armitage has been involved in many other areas of spectroscopy, including optical conductivity. Armitage is currently an assistant Professor at John's Hopkins University, on leave at the University of Geneva in Switzerland.
Professor David Vanderbilt is the winner of the 2006 Aneesur Rahman Prize in Computational Physics, one of the major prizes of the American Physical Society. The prize was established in 1992 by the IBM Corporation to recognize and encourage outstanding achievement in computational physics research. The citation reads, "For his conceptual breakthroughs in his development of the ultrasoft pseudopotential and the modern theory of polarization and their impact on first-principles investigations of the properties of materials." The prize will be awarded at the 2006 APS March Meeting in Baltimore.
The 2006 budget request to Congress by the Dept. of Energy highlights the recent measurement of the g-factor of an accelerated radioactive nucleus by Prof. Noemie Koller and her group. It was carried out at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, which is supported by the DOE.
Five current graduate students in the Rutgers Physics Department have been awarded Lucent-Rutgers Fellowships: Ms. Kasturi Basu, Mr. Ilya Berdnikov, Mr. Craig Fennie, Mr. Shitao Lou and Mr. Soonyong Park. These students will soon be matched with mentors at Lucent, giving them opportunities to work in both academic and industrial research environments. Congratulations to Kasturi, Ilya, Craig, Shitao and Soonyong!
Natan Andrei and Bob Bartynski have been recently elected to APS Fellowship. Prof. Andrei's citation: For elucidating the many-body effects of several condensed
matter systems, in particular the Kondo model.." and Prof. Bartynski's citation: For pioneering experiments to determine the electronic
properties of surfaces, especially for leadership in developing Auger
Photoelectron Coincidence Spectroscopy"
More info at http://www.aps.org/fellowship/2004/index.cfm
Namjung Hur, a student of Prof. Sang-Wook Cheong, was chosen to to receive a GMAG Outstanding Dissertation in Magnetism awards. This award has three components: an invited talk in an appropriate session at the March 2005 APS Meeting in Los Angeles, a monetary prize to the student, and finances towards travel or other costs of attending the Meeting.
Professor Joel Lebowitz has been awarded the 2004 Nicholson Medal for Humanitarian Service by the APS. The medal will be presented at the March 2005 Meeting of the APS. The citation reads: "For his tireless personal activism, throughout his superb career as a theoretical physicist, to help scientists and defend their human rights in countries around the globe."
Rutgers University Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Philip Furmanski has announced the formation of the Institute for Advanced Materials and Devices at Rutgers University. This Institute is intended to provide a vital link between academic scientific research at Rutgers and the needs of emerging commercial technologies in the areas of advanced materials and devices, and will involve the participation of about 20 faculty from the Department of Physics and Astronomy working together with faculty from other FAS and Engineering departments.
Professor Gabi Kotliar is among the four physicists selected this year to receive a prestigious and highly competitive Guggenheim Fellowship. Professor Kotliar received the 2003 award for his work in condensed matter theory.
Dr. George Downsbrough (B.S.'31, Ph.D.'36), the second Ph.D. recipient in our department, has contributed $200K towards an endowed fund in the department. The purpose of the fund is to help provide startup monies for new faculty members in Physics and Astronomy, who will be known as "Downsbrough Faculty Research Fellows" during the years that they receive such funds.
A bequest in the amount of $500K from the Van Dyck Trust, set up some years ago in honor of Francis Cuyler Van Dyck, the founder of the Physics Department, passed to the Department of Physics and Astronomy this year. Income from the funds will help supplement graduate fellowships for incoming graduate students who will be known as Francis Van Dyck Fellows.
The relocation in September 2001 of about a half-dozen faculty members into new offices in the NPL signals the completion of a major renovation project begun about 5 years ago. Adjacent to the Serin Physics building, the NPL -- formerly the "Nuclear Physics Laboratory" -- had been underutilized since a Tandem Accelerator was removed more than a decade ago. Now rededicated as the "NANOPHYSICS LABORATORY", the building provides offices and laboratory space for experimental faculty and postdocs associated with the Laboratory for Surface Modification (LSM), as well as other condensed matter laboratories. LSM has extensive state-of-the-art instrumentation in NPL, ranging from ion beam accelerators for determining surface structure and composition, to scanning probe microscopes for atomic-scale surface measurements.
The NSF has funded a major proposal submitted by Gabi Kotliar, David Vanderbilt, Karin Rabe, and Christian Uebing to acquire and install a supercomputer facility consisting of a cluster of roughly 150 tightly-linked high-performance PC's. In addition to its targeted reasearch mission for computational studies of complex materials, the cluster will also be available for broader research and educational purposes.
Dr. Basil Mchunu has arrived from South Africa as the the first Rutgers-SALT graduate fellow in astrophysics. He completed his undergraduate work at the University of Zululand in South Africa. This is a new fellowship program between Rutgers and the Government of South Africa.
Professor Walter Kohn (U.C. Santa Barbara) received an honorary Doctor of Science degree from Rutgers University at the University Commencement on May 17, 2001. Kohn is widely acclaimed for his work on density-functional theory that led to the award of the 1998 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, in addition to a large number of other seminal contributions to condensed matter physics. In connection with his visit, he gave a joint Physics and Chemistry Colloquium and was toasted at a special reception that followed.
Herbert Neuberger has been selected as a 2001 Guggenheim US/Canadian Fellow in Physics. The basis for this award is "unusually impressive achievement in the past and exceptional promise for future accomplishment."
Prof. Frank Zimmermann has been awarded the 2001 Board of Trustees Research Fellowship for Scholarly Excellence, given each year to a few Rutgers faculty members at the time of promotion for especially outstanding scholarship and research. The award carries a $2,000 research grant.
Congratulations to Michael Gershenson and Frank Zimmermann, who have been promoted to Associate Professor with Tenure, and to Ron Ransome, who has been promoted to Full Professor, effective July 1, 2001.
Noemie Koller has been selected as the 2001 winner of the Rutgers University Daniel Gorenstein Memorial Award in recognition of her scholarly excellence in experimental nuclear physics research and 40 years of dedicated service, administration, and teaching at Rutgers.
Valery Kiryukhin as been chosen to receive an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship for 2001. Kirkyukhin's research interests are in the area of experimental studies of novel materials with unusual superconducting and magnetic properties.
An anonymous donor has made a major multi-million dollar gift to the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Rutgers University. These new funds will undoubtedly make a major impact on our programs. Among other things, it will be used for:
- Creation of the Peter Lindenfeld Chair in Experimental Condensed-Matter Physics as of September 1, 2001, by a cash gift and a 5-year pledge.
- $500K cash gift for the SALT telescope project as a matching fund.
- Enhancement of the Mary Wheeler Wigner Scholarship endowed fund so that about $5,000 can be provided to the best rising senior physics major each year.
- Enhancement of the Richard J.Plano Teaching Assistant Prize endowed fund to allow for the offering of two new $1,000 prizes each year.
- Creation of the Richard J. Plano Dissertation Prize providing $1,000 each year for the best Ph.D. dissertation.
- Creation of the Henry C. Torrey Graduate Fellowship in Physics and Astronomy which will provide an additional $8,000 for two years to the recipient of a Graduate School Henry C. Torrey Graduate Fellowship as an incoming student.
- Creation of six new undergraduate full-tuition scholarships for outstanding physics majors, to be named the Herman Y. Carr, Robert L. Sells, and Noemie Benczer Koller Scholarships.
- Creation of two Richard J. Plano Summer Research Scholarships of $4,500 each to be awarded annually for research to be carried out during the summer after the junior year.
- Creation of an annual $40,000 Undergraduate Instructional Equipment Fund to be used for the purchase and renewal of state-of-the-art equipment for our undergraduate teaching laboratories in physics and astronomy.
Emanuel Diaconescu, a recent Rutgers Ph.D. graduate who did his thesis work under the supervision of Michael Douglas, has been awarded the 2000 U.S. Council of Graduate Schools/University Microfilms International (CGS/UMI) Distinguished Dissertation Award for his thesis "D-branes and Nonperturbative Dynamics in String Theory." This is awarded annually for the best Ph.D. dissertation in the entire country in any field. He is now at the Institute for Advanced Study. Congratulations, Emanuel!
Professor Michael Douglas of the Rutgers Department of Physics and Astronomy, and the New High Energy Theory Center, is a co-winner of the 2000 Sackler Prize in the Physical Sciences, along with Professor Juan Maldacena of Harvard University (a former Rutgers postdoc). The prize is being awarded for their "outstanding contribution to Superstring Theory". This annual prize is awarded to a scientist(s) under the age of 40 in a selected area of the physical sciences. This year, the first year of the award, the topic was High Energy Physics. A distinguished international panel (including Stephen Weinberg) chose Douglas and Maldacena as the high energy theorists under the age of 40 who have made the most outstanding contributions in the world to the field. In future years, other areas of the physical sciences will be selected. The award was administered by Tel Aviv University in Israel, and was presented in Israel on May 22, 2000.
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