Sir John Pendry is awarded the Kavli Prize

2 June 2014

IOP fellow Prof. Sir John Pendry has shared in the $1 m Kavli Prize in Nanoscience awarded by the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters.

Sir John Pendry

Prof. Pendry, chair in theoretical solid state physics at Imperial College London, shared the prize with IOP affiliate member Prof. Stefan Hell, director of the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Germany, and Prof. Thomas Ebbesen, of the Université Louis Pasteur in France.

The three were recognised “for their transformative contributions to the field of nano-optics that have broken long-held beliefs about the limitations of the resolution limits of optical microscopy and imaging”. Prof. Pendry was recognised specifically for “developing the theory underlying new optical nanoscale materials with unprecedented properties, such as the negative index of refraction, allowing for the formation of ‘perfect lenses’.”

Prof. Hell was recognised “for ground-breaking developments that have led to fluorescence microscopy with nanometre scale resolution, opening up nanoscale imaging to biological applications” and Prof. Ebbesen for “the discovery of the extraordinary transmission of light through sub-wavelength apertures.”

The $1 m Kavli Prize in Astrophysics was shared by Prof. Alan Guth of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, who was awarded the IOP’s Isaac Newton Medal in 2009, Prof. Andrei Linde of Stanford University in the US, and Prof. Alexei Starobinsky of the Landau Institute for Theoretical Physics of the Russian Academy of Sciences. They were recognised for “pioneering the theory of cosmic inflation”.

The prizes, which were announced on 29 May, will be presented in Oslo, Norway, in September.

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