AFOSR-Supported Nobel Prize Laureates


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AFOSR-Supported Nobel Prize Laureates

  1. 1. AFOSR-Supported Nobel Prize Laureates The Air Force Office of Scientific Research has created a strong legacy ofNobel Prize winning research. One of the most highly coveted and recognized awards, the Nobel Prizerecognizes those who contribute significant achievements in the areas ofphysics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature, peace, and economicsciences (the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory ofAlfred Nobel). The Nobel Foundation was established in 1900, and in 1901 theNobel Prize became the first international award to be given on an annual basis.Established as outlined in his last will and testament, Dr. Alfred Nobel stated,“…the whole of my remaining realizable estate shall be dealt with in the followingway…annually distributed in the form of prizes to those who, during thepreceding year, shall have conferred the greatest benefit to mankind.” For overone hundred years, Nobel laureates in the fields of physics, chemistry,economics and physiology or medicine have been the recognized leaders in theirrespective fields, accomplishing research at the very edge of the frontiers ofscience. Since its establishment in 1951, the Air Force Office of Scientific Research(AFOSR) has sponsored 70 researchers who went on to become Nobellaureates. On average, these laureates received AFOSR funding 16 years priorto winning their Nobel awards. The accomplishments of these laureatesdemonstrate the astute ability of AFOSR program managers to choose world-class researchers to address Air Force requirements and advance Air Forceprograms. The following descriptions of the work performed by AFOSR-fundedNobel recipients recognize the remarkable scientific achievements that havecontributed to the significant United States Air Force advantage on the battlefield.AFOSR has funded 35 laureates in Physics, 24 in Chemistry, eight in Physiologyor Medicine, and three in Economics.*________________________________________________________________ *Select quotes in the following descriptions of respective Nobel Laureate accomplishments arefrom: "All Nobel Prizes". 28 Jun 2010 1
  2. 2. AFOSR-Supported Nobel Prize Laureates Award AFOSR Award Name Year Support Began Type 1. 1955 1954 Physics Polykarp Kusch 2. 1955 1954 Physics Willis E. Lamb 3. 1956 1953 Physics John Bardeen* 4. 1960 1952 Chemistry Willard Libby 5. 1961 1953 Physics Robert Hofstadter 6. 1963 1958 Physics Eugene P. Wigner 7. 1964 1953 Physics Charles H. Townes 8. 1966 1952 Chemistry Robert S. Mulliken 9. 1967 1953 Physics Hans Albrecht Bethe10. 1967 1959 Medicine Ragnar Granit11. 1967 1962 Chemistry George Porter12. 1968 1966 Chemistry Lars Onsager13. 1969 1958 Physics Murray Gell-Mann14. 1970 1959 Medicine Ulf Von Euler15. 1972 1953 Physics John Bardeen*16. 1972 1959 Physics John R. Schrieffer17. 1973 1961 Medicine Nikolaas Tinbergen18. 1973 1968 Physics Brian D. Josephson19. 1974 1961 Chemistry Paul J. Flory20. 1976 1959 Chemistry William N. Lipscomb21. 1977 1968 Physics Philip W. Anderson22. 1977 1964 Physics John H. Van Vleck23. 1977 1954 Chemistry Ilya Prigogine24. 1978 1962 Economics Herbert A. Simon25. 1979 1958 Physics Sheldon L. Glashow26. 1979 1962 Physics Abdus Salam27. 1979 1958 Physics Steven Weinberg28. 1980 1959 Chemistry Walter Gilbert29. 1981 1975 Physics Nicolaas Bloembergen30. 1981 1956 Physics Kai M. Siegbahn31. 1981 1981 Physics Arthur Schawlow32. 1981 1959 Phys/Med David H. Hubel33. 1981 1959 Phys/Med Thorsten N. Wiesel34. 1981 1962 Chemistry Kenichi Fukui35. 1981 1980 Chemistry Roald Hoffman 2
  3. 3. Award AFOSR Award Name Year Support Began Type36. 1983 1961 Physics S. Chandrasekhar37. 1983 1961 Physics William A. Fowler38. 1986 1981 Chemistry John C. Polanyi39. 1986 1979 Chemistry Dudley R. Herschbach40. 1986 1971 Chemistry Yuan T. Lee41. 1987 1962 Chemistry Donald J. Cram42. 1988 1970 Physics Melvin Schwartz43. 1990 1968 Chemistry Elias J. Corey44. 1990 1961 Physics Jerome I. Friedman45. 1990 1961 Physics Henry W. Kendall46. 1992 1962 Chemistry Rudolph A. Marcus47. 1995 1995 Chemistry Mario Molina48. 1996 1972 Chemistry Richard E. Smalley49. 1997 1988 Physics Steven Chu50. 1998 1985 Physics Daniel C. Tsui51. 1999 1986 Chemistry Ahmed Zewail52. 2000 1988 Chemistry Alan J. Heeger53. 2000 1970 Chemistry Alan G. MacDiarmid54. 2000 1958 Physics Jack S. Kilby55 2000 1995 Physics Herbert Kroemer56. 2000 1984 Medicine Paul Greengard57. 2000 1963 Medicine Eric R. Kandel58. 2001 1990 Physics Wolfgang Ketterle59. 2002 1975 Chemistry John B. Fenn60. 2002 1977 Economics Daniel Kahneman61. 2003 1956 Medicine Paul C. Lauterbur62. 2005 1990 Physics Theodor W. Hansch63. 2005 1991 Physics John L. Hall64. 2005 1962 Physics Roy J. Glauber65. 2005 1987 Chemistry Robert H. Grubbs66. 2005 1960 Economics Thomas C. Schelling67. 2006 1985 Physics George F. Smoot68. 2008 1965 Physics Yoichiro Nambu69. 2010 2008 Physics Andre Geim70. 2010 2008` Physics Konstantin Novoselov71. 2011 1999 Chemistry Daniel Shechtman *Note: John Bardeen awarded Physics Nobel in 1956 and 1972. (Current: August 2011) 3
  4. 4. Polykarp Kusch (Columbia University, New York, NY)Willis Lamb (Stanford University, Stanford, CA)PHYSICS: 1955 In the area of Physics, many breakthroughs have occurred with the aid ofAFOSR funding. In 1955, Kusch and Lamb shared the prize for "precisiondetermination of the magnetic moment of the electron" and "discoveriesconcerning the fine structure of the hydrogen spectrum," respectively. Prior to his laureate, Kusch studied the effects of magnetic fields onbeams of atoms with Nobel Laureate Dr. Isidor Rabi, who had a profoundinfluence on Kuschs research. Through diligence and effort, Kuschdemonstrated that magnetic properties of electrons were not consistent withexisting theories. He accurately measured the magnetic moment of the electronand its behavior in hydrogen and numerous atomic, molecular, and nuclearproperties by radio-frequency beam techniques. Lamb joined the faculty of Colombia University in 1938, and worked in theradiation laboratory alongside Kusch. In 1947, Lamb applied new techniques tomeasuring the hyperfine structure of lines appearing in the spectrum of light andfound their positions to be slightly different from theoretical predictions. He laterdevised microwave techniques for examining the spectral lines of helium. Thevaried scope of Lambs research ranged from such diverse areas as thefluctuation in cosmic ray showers and order-disorder problems, to the ejection ofelectrons by metastable atoms. The research by these two winners resulted in the development oftechniques for microwave interaction with atoms and atomic beams, now used inmany technological applications. One important application to the Air Force and within the civilian economyis the cesium beam atomic clock, an essential part of the Global PositioningSystem (GPS). Without the incredibly accurate time-keeping capabilities ofatomic clocks, the GPS would not be possible.AFOSR Funding Began: 1954 4
  5. 5. John Bardeen (University of Illinois, Urbana, IL)PHYSICS: 1956 Dr. John Bardeen was the first scientist to win two Nobel prizes in thesame category. He won his first Nobel physics prize in 1956 for "co-invention ofthe transistor," a tiny electronic device capable of performing most of thefunctions of a vacuum tube. In 1972, he shared the prize with two others for their"theory of superconductivity, usually called the BCS-theory," anabbreviation formed by the first letter of each of the winners surnames. While Bardeen developed the transistor at Bell Labs in the late 1940s, itwas in 1953 that AFOSR funded Bardeen and others in the refinement ofintegrated circuit technology for Air Force applications Air Force systems in usetoday would be far more bulky, heavier and antiquated if not for Bardeensdiscovery. Dr. Bardeens second award was for the "development of a theory toexplain superconductivity," the disappearance of electrical resistance in certainmetals and alloys at temperatures near absolute zero. His work has benefitedthe medical field with applications to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and theelectronic field with the development of sensors, transducers, magnets andparticle accelerators.AFOSR Funding Began: 1953 5
  6. 6. Willard Libby (University of California, Los Angeles)CHEMISTRY: 1960 Willard F. Libby won the 1960 Nobel Chemistry Prize for his "method touse carbon-14 for age determination in archaeology, genealogy,geophysics, and other branches of science." Libby studied radioactive isotope carbon-14 since its discovery in 1941andis best known for his radiocarbon dating techniques. He first showed that C-14 ispresent in small amounts of C02 in our atmosphere and is absorbed by all lifeforms in regular amounts up to a point, after which no more is taken in. Using thisknowledge, Libby postulated, together with the known half-life rate of 5730 yearsand the calculated amount of the isotope present in the object, one couldcalculate an approximate age for ancient materials. In 1947, Libby and hisstudents at the Institute for Nuclear Studies developed the method of C14 datingusing a highly sensitive Geiger counter. Since C14 decays at a measurable rateupon the death of an organism, Libby was able to determine the age of organicartifacts by measuring the amount of remaining C14. The tests proved reliable forobjects up to 70,000 years. Mr. Libbys dating technique is extremely valuable to earth scientists,anthropologists and especially archaeologists, virtually eliminating the educatedguesses about the ages of various artifacts based on evidence found at the site.Now that samples from around the world can be tested, a new chronology hasemerged that knits together archaeological findings from around the world. HisNobel Prize citation read: "Seldom has such a single discovery in chemistry hadsuch an impact on the thinking of so many fields of human endeavor. Seldomhas a single discovery generated such wide public interest." AFOSR funding for Libby covered a wide range of requirements:radioactive isotopes, optical transparency, high-pressure chemistry, electrontunneling, pollution control catalysts, and industrial chemistry in space were but afew of Libbys research efforts.AFOSR Funding Began: 1954 6
  7. 7. Robert Hofstadter (Stanford University, Stanford, CA)PHYSICS: 1961 Robert Hofstadter won the 1961 Physics Nobel for his "pioneeringstudies of electron scattering in atomic nuclei and for his thereby achieveddiscoveries concerning the structure of the nucleons." Hofstadter used a linear electron accelerator to measure and explore theconstituents of atomic nuclei. At the time, protons, neutrons, and electrons wereall thought to be particles without structure; but Hofstadter discovered thatprotons and neutrons have a definite size and form. He was able to determinethe precise size of the proton and neutron and provide the first reasonablyconsistent picture of the structure of the atomic nucleus. He also madesubstantial contributions to gamma ray spectroscopy, leading to the use ofradioactive tracers to locate tumors and other disorders. During World War II heworked as a physicist at the National Bureau of Standards, where he helpeddevelop the proximity fuse, an antiaircraft weapon. His work on X-Ray detection in semiconductors and scintillatorscontributed to US strategic systems in two ways. Semiconductor and scintillationdetectors are used in flash x-ray machine work that is part of nuclear hardeningof strategic systems including Peacekeeper Missile and Minuteman. They arealso used in circuitry that protects on-board computer systems in such missilesfrom disruption by nuclear radiation.AFOSR Funding Began: 1953 7
  8. 8. Eugene Wigner (Princeton University, Princeton, NJ)PHYSICS: 1963 Noble Laureate in 1963 for Physics, Dr. Eugene Wigner received his prizefor his "contributions to the theory of the atomic nucleus and theelementary particles, particularly through the discovery and application offundamental symmetry principles." Wigners work helped to disclose the structure of the atomic nucleus andextended quantum mechanics theory relations to the nature of the proton andneutron. In 1939, Wigner was one of five scientists who informed PresidentFranklin D. Roosevelt about the possible military use of atomic energy. Known as the "Father of Nuclear Engineering," Wigners work contributedto the development of the atomic bomb and the design of commercial nuclearreactors. He designed the first fast neutron breeder reactor. Under AFOSR contract, Wigner explored a wide range of topics. Hediscussed the usefulness of mathematics as a tool for the formation of the lawsof physics; explored various aspects of the future of nuclear energy; and alsoreviewed the standard theory of measurements in quantum mechanics.AFOSR Funding Began: 1958 8
  9. 9. Charles Townes (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA)PHYSICS: 1964 Beginning in 1953, AFOSR helped to sponsor the research of Dr. CharlesTownes, who went on to win the 1964 prize in Physics for his "fundamentalwork in the field of quantum electronics, which has led to the constructionof oscillators and amplifiers based on the maser-laser principle." Townes is credited for inventing the maser, a device that amplifieselectromagnetic waves. This technology provided the means for sensitivereception of communications and for precise navigation. The maser alsoprovided the basis for its successor, the laser. AFOSR helped to fund the earlymaser and follow-on laser work of Dr. Townes. The result of this revolutionaryresearch transformed communications, navigation, astronomy, radar, atomicclocks, surgery and many industrial applications. His discoveries have had wide-ranging impact not only on the Air Force, but our entire society.AFOSR Funding Began: 1953 9
  10. 10. Robert Mulliken (University of Chicago, Chicago, IL)CHEMISTRY: 1966 Winning the Noble prize in Chemistry in 1966, Dr. Robert Mullikensresearch was recognized for "fundamental work concerning chemical bondsand the electronic structure of molecules by the molecular orbital method." His early work concentrated on isotopes and on diatomic band spectra,followed by theoretical work to systematize the electronic state of molecules.Later work by Dr. Mulliken involved extensive research of the structure andspectra of molecular complexes and also extending and progressing thestructure and spectra of hydrogen, helium, nitrogen and other small molecules. A pioneer, Mulliken significantly contributed to the development ofmethods now used in computational chemistry. His work led to the advancementof computer codes with real predictive capabilities that are now used widelythroughout the Department of Defense. Mullikens relationship with AFOSR dates back to 1952 and ensuing years,when Mullikens research group obtained computationally practicableexpressions for two-center integrals and went on to simplify the time consumingeffort of programming the formulas for molecular integrals. The methods developed by Mulliken enable calculations of manymolecular properties to guide the process of synthesizing new compounds, suchas fuels and propellants, and are also used to develop sensors that can help withthe defense against chemical and biological attacks.AFOSR Funding Began: 1952 10
  11. 11. Hans Bethe (Cornell University, Ithaca, NY)PHYSICS: 1967 Hans Bethe received the Nobel prize in Physics in 1967 for his"contributions to the theory of nuclear reactions, especially his discoveriesconcerning the energy production in stars." Bethe suggested that the production of energy by the sun and other starsoccurs through thermonuclear fusion, a series of nuclear reactions by whichhydrogen is converted into helium. Bethe provided great insight into the fundamentals of heavy ions and theirinteraction with matter. His work led directly to a capability to accurately predictenergy deposition of heavy ions in any kind of material. With the advent of Air Force space satellites and the discovery of theintense radiation belts surrounding the earth, radiation vulnerability of thesesatellites became a serious problem for the Air Force. Dr Bethes work appliesdirectly to the interactions of these radiations and his prize-winning work is usedto assess survivability from radiation for every Air Force satellite in orbit today.AFOSR Funding Began: 1953 11
  12. 12. Ragnar Granit (The Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden)PHYSIOLOGY/MEDICINE: 1967 Ragnar Granit was co-winner of the Nobel prize for Physiology andMedicine in 1967 for his "discoveries concerning the primary physiologicaland chemical visual processes in the eye." As a neurophysiologist, Dr. Granit studied nerve impulses to understandhow the eye works with the brain to create vision. Granit worked on a method touse microscopic electrodes to measure the stimuli of the optic nerves of theretina, the part of the eye that sends the image gathered by the lens to the brain.He realized that when light is received by the retina the light has both anexcitatory and inhibitory effect on the optic nerves and that this combination ofeffects creates contrast in the image received by the brain. In 1933 he helped todevelop the electroretinogram (ERG), a device used to measure the activity ofthe retina. He used it for vision research in general, but especially for color visionresearch. In the mid-1940s, Granit turned his attention to the study of the length andtension meters in the muscles known as muscle spindles and tendon organs.Granits work in this area did much to explain the physiology of muscle controland excitation. Granit co-authored two reports in this field under AFOSRauspices. Dr. Granits research on the electrical properties of neurons led todiscoveries relating to the electrical signals of brain nerve cells. Those findingswere used to assess cognitive workloads under a variety of conditions that affectan individuals performance. In addition, engineers are using his methods fordetermining functional properties for networks of nerve cells to develop moreeffective designs for analog computers and non-linear dynamic control systems.AFOSR Funding Began: 1958 12
  13. 13. George Porter (Royal Institution of Great Britain, London, England)CHEMISTRY: 1967 George Porter shared the 1967 Nobel Prize in Chemistry "for studies ofextremely fast chemical reactions, effected by disturbing the equilibrium bymeans of very short pulses of energy." As Porter observed, one of the principal activities of a scientist wasextending the very limited senses of man, enabling him to observe phenomenabeyond his normal experience. Microscopes and microbalances allow theobservation of things which man cannot perceive through his own senses. In thedimension of time, mans perception is limited to about one-twentieth of asecond, the response time of the eye. However, most fundamental chemicalreactions occur in the range of milliseconds or less, making it necessary toobserve reactions in microtime. It was in the field of making these observationsand interpreting the resulting data that Porter made lasting contributions toscience by the method of flash photolysis. Employing this process, Porter wasable to yield information concerning the mechanism and kinetics of thephotochemical reactions that occurred. Porters early relationship with the U.S. Air Force concerned research onlow-level excitation and energy transfer of gases. His later work with AFOSRdealt with energy storage and transfer on the molecular level to provideunderstanding of processes related to Air Force needs in solar energyconversion devices, photographic imaging, flash blindness protection, andradiation damage control in biological systems.AFOSR Funding Began: 1962 13
  14. 14. Lars Onsager (Yale University, New haven, CT)CHEMISTRY: 1968 Lars Onsager won the 1968 Nobel Chemistry prize "for the discovery ofthe reciprocal relations bearing his name, which are fundamental for thethermodynamics of irreversible processes." One could have expected that the importance of his "reciprocal relations inirreversible processes" would have been immediately obvious to the scientificcommunity. Instead it turned out that Onsager was far ahead of his time. Afterpublication it attracted almost no attention for more than a third of a century. Itwas only after WWII that the concept became more widely known and eventuallyplayed a dominant role in the rapid development of irreversible thermodynamics,with numerous applications not only in physics and chemistry but also in biologyand technology. The great importance of irreversible thermodynamics becomesapparent if we realize that almost all common processes are irreversible andcannot by themselves go backwards. Examples are conduction of heat from ahot to a cold body and mixing or diffusion. When a cold lump of sugar isdissolved in a cup of hot tea these processes take place simultaneously. Onsagers great contribution was that he could prove that if the equationsgoverning the flows are written in an appropriate form, then there exist certainsimple connections between the coefficients in these equations. Theseconnections - the reciprocal relations - make possible a complete theoreticaldescription of irreversible processes. Earlier attempts to treat such processes bymeans of classical thermodynamics gave little success. Onsagers research for AFOSR dealt with low-temperature physics.AFOSR Funding Began: 1966 14
  15. 15. Murray Gell-Mann (California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA)PHYSICS: 1969 Murray Gell-Mann won the Nobel prize in 1969 for his "contributionsand discoveries concerning the classification of elementary particles andtheir interactions." As a theoretical physicist Gell-Mann is known for his classification ofsubatomic particles and his proposal for the existence of quarks. His research inparticle physics concerned the interactions between protons and neutrons. Onthe basis of a proposed property called "strangeness," conserved by particlesinvolved in strong and electromagnetic interactions, Gell-Mann grouped relatedparticles into multiplets, or families. In 1963 he and a colleague George Zweigadvanced the "quark" theory. They hypothesized that quarks, particles carryingfractional electric charges, are the smallest particles of matter. Dr Gell-Manns"eightfold way" theory brought order to the chaos created by the discovery ofsome 100 particles in the atoms nucleus. He found that all of these particles,including the neutron and proton, are composed of fundamental building blocks-quarks-that are permanently confined by forces coming from the exchange of"gluons." He called the quantum field theory of quarks and gluons, "quantumchromodynamics," which seems to account for all the nuclear particles and theirstrong interactions.AFOSR Funding Began: 1958 15
  16. 16. Ulf von Euler (The Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden)PHYSIOLOGY/MEDICINE: 1970 Armed, in part, with funding from AFOSR, Dr. Ulf von Euler madeimportant discoveries in the areas of physiology and medicine. He shared theNobel Prize with two others in 1970 for "discoveries concerning the humoraltransmitters in the nerve terminals and the mechanism for their storage,release and inactivation." Von Euler is credited for discovering that neural transmitters are storedand released from nerve cell granules, which controls the bodys response tostress or exertion. His findings stimulated a tremendous amount of researchregarding the affect neurochemical influences have on the brain, heart and otherbody systems. The subsequent work produced major advances in the way thosewith mental illness, heart disease and other neurogenic conditions are treated. Dr. von Eulers work is used by the Air Force to learn more about apersons neural control as they go about their normal daily routine as well asduring periods of sleep. This research is used to help determine the effectivenessof an individual during sustained operations.AFOSR Funding Began: 1960 16
  17. 17. John Bardeen (University of Illinois, Urbana, IL)John R. Schrieffer (University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA)PHYSICS: 1972 Dr. John Bardeen was the first scientist to win two Nobel prizes in thesame category -- Physics. He won his first prize in 1956 for "co-invention of thetransistor," a tiny electronic device capable of performing most of the functionsof a vacuum tube. In 1972, he shared the prize with John R. Schrieffer and LeonN. Cooper for their jointly developed "theory of superconductivity, usuallycalled the BCS-theory," an abbreviation formed by the first letter of each of thewinners surnames. While Bardeen developed the transistor at Bell Labs in the late 1940s, itwas in 1953 that AFOSR funded Bardeen and others in the refinement ofintegrated circuit technology for Air Force applications. Air Force systems in usetoday would be far more bulky, heavier and antiquated if not for Bardeensdiscovery. Dr. Bardeens second award was for the "development of a theory toexplain superconductivity," the disappearance of electrical resistance in certainmetals and alloys at temperatures near absolute zero. Bardeen, Cooper andSchrieffer’s groundbreaking work has been the basis for follow on successesregarding quantum mechanical tunnel phenomena to study superconductors, thediscovery of magnetic flux quantization and Josephson junction effects. Dr’sBardeen and Schrieffer first received AFOSR funding in the 1950s, resulting inseminal research reports on superconductivity in the following years. Their BCStheory has benefited a broad range of basic scientific research with applicationsto national defense, commercial, industrial production processes, as well as themedical field with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and most significantly inthe electronic arena with the development of sensors, transducers, magnets andparticle accelerators.AFOSR Funding Began: 1953 (Bardeen); 1959 (Schrieffer) 17
  18. 18. Nikolass Tinbergen (University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom)PHYSIOLOGY/MEDICINE: 1973 Dr. Nikolaas Tinbergen shared the Nobel prize for Physiology & Medicinewith two others in 1973 for their "discoveries concerning organization andelicitation of individual and social behavior pattems." It was the first time theNobel Committee recognized research in sociobiology or ethology. As a zoologist, Dr Tinbergens experimental work demonstrated howcomplex patterns of animal behavior depended on both slowly changing inheritedbehavioral patterns and more rapid-paced changes due to learning. His findingsstimulated considerable scientific work in such diverse fields as animalcommunication and human language learning, mate selection, evolutionarytheory and, most important to the Air Force, theories of cooperative behavior.These theories help explain and predict ways that large numbers of simplesystems can produce very complex goal-directed behaviors with minimalcommunication between them. The path of Tinbergens work passed through cybernetics in the 1960s,learning automata in the 1970s, neural networks and "animats" in the 1980s, tomodern control theory. The rules that determine properties of cooperatingmicrosatellites, micro-air vehicles, and ground-based "nano-bots" may be foundto share much in common with the rules that determine goal-seeking behaviorsfound in ant colonies.AFOSR Funding Began: 1961 18
  19. 19. Brian Josephson (Cambridge University, Cambridge, United Kngdom)PHYSICS: 1973 Nobel Laureate in Physics, Dr. Brian Josephson, won the 1973 prize forhis "theoretical predictions of the properties of a supercurrent through atunnel barrier, in particular those phenomena that are generally known asthe Josephson effects." He invented a superconductivity device that bears his name - theJosephson Junction - which is used in digital electronic applications. This deviceprovides the basis for the worlds most sensitive magnetometers and the fastest,lowest power electronic switching elements. Josephson was responsible for developing the theory now knownuniversally as the Josephson effects in superconductors, which is used to makethe worlds fastest, high-resolution electronic circuitry, currently used in Air Forceelectronic countermeasures systems, and many other applications.AFOSR Funding Began: 1968 19
  20. 20. Paul Flory (Stanford University, Stanford, CA)CHEMISTRY: 1974 Dr. Paul John Flory, won the Nobel prize for Chemistry in 1974 for his"fundamental achievements, both theoretical and experimental, in thephysical chemistry of the macromolecules." Dr. Florys first research focused mostly on photochemistry andspectroscopy, which enables scientists to determine the composition ofmolecules by analyzing the light they emit when heated. Later, Flory beganresearching the physical chemistry of polymers. He studied their properties insolution and in bulk and his research revealed the connections between thechemical structures of the individual polymer molecules and their physicalproperties. Considered by many to be the "founder of polymer science," Floryswork with nylon and synthetic rubber proved to be of great commercialimportance. Dr. Flory developed the framework to understand the physics andviscoelasticity behavior of polymers. This framework led to the development ofadvanced resins used in organic-matrix, carbon-fiber reinforced compositescurrently used in the wings and fuselages of many Air Force aircraft, includingthe F-16, B-2, F-22 and Joint Strike Fighter (JSF).AFOSR Funding Began: 1961 20
  21. 21. William Lipscomb (Harvard University, Cambridge, MA)CHEMISTRY: 1976 William N. Lipscomb put his AFOSR funding to optimal use when heearned the Nobel prize for Chemistry in 1976 for his "studies on the structureof boranes illuminating problems of chemical bonding." Boranes are compounds of boron and hydrogen. By developing x-raytechniques that later proved useful in many chemical applications, Lipscomb andhis associates were able to map the molecular structures of numerous boranesand their derivatives. The stability of boranes could not be explained bytraditional concepts of electron bonding -- in which each pair of atoms is linked bya pair of electrons -- because boranes lacked sufficient electrons. Lipscombshowed how three atoms could share a pair of electrons. In 1961, the work ofDr. Lipscomb was featured in AFOSR Chemistry Program Review to illustratesome of his innovative crystallographic work. Since the early 1960s his research also focused on the relationshipbetween three-dimensional structures of enzymes and how they catalyzereactions. He is noted for his famous quotation: "The creative process, first of all,requires a good nine hours of sleep a night. Second, it must not be pushed bythe need to produce practical applications. "AFOSR Funding Began: 1959 21
  22. 22. Philip Anderson (Bell Laboratories, Murray Hill, NJ)John Van Vleck (Harvard University, Cambridge, MA)PHYSICS: 1977 Philip W. Anderson, John H. Van Vleck, and Nevill Mott, won the NobelPrize in 1977 for their contribution to the "fundamental theoreticalinvestigations of the electronic structure of magnetic and disorderedsystems." Anderson is one of the leading theorists on superconductivity and won hispart of the prize for developments in advanced electronic circuitry. He showedconditions under which an electron in a disordered or imperfect system can eithermove through the system as a whole or stay in a specific position -- becoming alocalized electron. This development provided a better understanding of electricalconduction in magnetic materials. His research in solid-state physics madepossible the development of inexpensive electronic switching and memorydevices in computers. Anderson also has done work on pulsar glitches withDavid Pines. He is credited with developing concept of the "Higgs" boson in1962. Dr. Van Vleck was recognized for his contributions to the understanding ofthe behavior of electrons in magnetic, noncrystalline solid materials. Early duringthe 1930s, Van Vleck developed the first fully articulated quantum mechanicaltheory of magnetism. Later he was a chief architect of the ligand field theory ofmolecular bonding. The research performed in solid-state physics by these Nobellaureates made possible the development of inexpensive electronic switchingand memory devices in computers, which are widely used in industry and inmilitary systems. Van Vleck also contributed to a variety of studies, mostnotably, on the spectra of free molecules and paramagnetic relaxation.AFOSR Funding Began: 1964 (Van Fleck); 1968 (Anderson) 22
  23. 23. Ilya Prigogine (Universite Libre de Bruxelles, Brussells, Belgium; and University of Texas, Austin, TX)CHEMISTRY: 1977 Dr. Ilya Prigogine won the Nobel prize for Chemistry in 1977 for his"contributions to non- equilibrium thermodynamics, particularly the theoryof dissipative structures." Prigogine focused most of his work on better understanding the role oftime in biology and in the physical sciences. He has contributed significantly tothe understanding of irreversible processes, particularly in systems far fromequilibrium. He initiated the application of thermodynamics to irreversibleprocesses in both living and inanimate systems. Prigogines contributions havecome largely in irreversibility, or, as he calls it, "the arrow of time." His concept of dissipative structures describes the workings of opensystems -- systems in which there is an exchange of matter and energy with theoutside environment. His theory has been widely adopted by the U.S.Department of Transportation to predict traffic-flow patterns. In biology, thetheory has proved useful in understanding a number of phenomena, including theglycolytic, or sugar, cycle, a metabolic process by which living cells extractenergy from food. As a leader in the field of nonlinear statistical mechanics, his workcontributed to the ability to analyze processes in complex systems. Thecontribution of his work to DoD is in understanding the atmospheric processesthat are governed by complex interrelated phenomena.AFOSR Funding Began: 1953 23
  24. 24. Herbert A. Simon (Carnegie Mellon University)ECONOMICS: 1978 The 1978 Alfred Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences wasawarded to Herbert A. Simon, “for his pioneering research into the decision-making process within economic organizations.” Herbert Simon was very much a renaissance man as his undergraduateand graduate work deviated sharply from classical economic theory, and evenincluded making a “…serious study of graduate-level physics in order tostrengthen and practice….mathematical skills and to gain an intimate knowledgeof what a ‘hard’ science was like, particularly on the theoretical side.” Simonmade an early name for himself in economics with the publication of his bookAdministrative Behavior in 1947, which looked at companies as adaptive systemscomprised of various components, not in search of maximum profits, butsearching to find solutions to problems. His critical work had obvious applicationto large bureaucratic/government organizations dealing with expansive planning,budgeting and control issues. AFOSR funded numerous studies by Simon beginning in 1964 dealingwith game theory, and moving on to efficiencies in computer time-sharing in1966. AFOSR, along with the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA),supported Simon (and co-author Allen Newell) in a long term study that ultimatelybecame a classic book in the field of information processing titled HumanProblem Solving (1972). In many ways the book was the genesis for theapplication of computers—both as a tool and a comparative model—to study howhumans think.AFOSR Funding Began: 1962 24
  25. 25. Sheldon Glashow (Harvard University, Cambridge, MA)Steven Weinberg (Harvard University, Cambridge, MA)Abdus Salam (International Centre for Theoretical Physics, Trieste, Italy, and Imperial College of Science and Technology, London, United Kingdom)PHYSICS: 1979 AFOSR funded physicists Sheldon L. Glashow, Abdus Salam, and StevenWeinberg won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1979 for their "contributions to thetheory of the unified weak and electromagnetic interaction betweenelementary particles, including inter alia the prediction of the weak neutralcurrent ." Four forces were believed to drive the laws of physics: gravity,electromagnetism, the strong force (which holds an atoms nucleus together),and the weak force (which breaks an atom apart, as in radioactivity).Independent works by Drs. Glashow, Salam and Weinberg resulted in theunification of the weak and electromagnetic forces. Glashows research involved many aspects of particle theory, cosmology,and classical mechanics. He received the award for his pioneering work on theelectroweak theory. This theory, completed in the 1970s, discusses therelationship between two of the four fundamental forces of nature,electromagnetic force and weak force. Through these forces, subatomic particlesinteract with each other. The electromagnetic force holds molecules together andkeeps electrons in orbit around an atomic nucleus. The weak force causesradioactive decay in the nucleus. Glashow also predicted the existence of thecharm quark, one of the quarks that make up elementary particles. Dr. Salam is also famous for his contributions to the electroweak theory.Additional electroweak theory research was conducted by Steven Weinberg,who, around 1967, theorized that the electromagnetic and the weak forces arethe same at extremely high energy levels. The validity of the theory wasascertained in the following years through experiments carried out at thesuperprotosynchrotron facility at CERN in Geneva, which led to the discovery ofthe W and Z particles. Salams electroweak theory is still the core of the standard 25
  26. 26. model of high-energy physics. Their work represented one giant step closer tophysicists long-dreamed of goal of finding a single elegant equation to explain allthe matter and forces in nature. The work of these three nuclear physicists on isotopic spin provides someof the basic understanding that AFOSR is building upon in studies of spinisomers, which have significant ability to store large amounts of energy. ThisAFOSR funded work is regarded as revolutionary. If developments aresuccessful, weapons systems of unprecedented capability will emerge along withnumerous applications in space and industry.AFOSR Funding Began: 1958 (Glashow); 1958 (Weinberg); 1962 (Salam) 26
  27. 27. Walter Gilbert (Harvard University, Boston, MA)CHEMISTRY: 1980 AFOSR-funded Walter Gilbert was a co-recipient of the 1980 Chemistryaward “for contributions concerning the determination of base sequencesin nucleic acids.” Although Gilbert’s doctorate and initial research was in theoretical physics,it was in the summer of 1960 that he joined a colleague in an experiment toidentify messenger RNA, which is a carrier of information from the genome to theprotein producing ribosomes. After this successful endeavor, Gilbert eventuallyshifted his work full time to experimental molecular biology and ultimatelyreached the point where his contributions to the field made it possible to map outthe structure and function of a cell’s deoxyribonucleic acid or DNA. The chemistry of a living cell is governed by DNA within its chromosomes,and DNA carries out its task by determining which enzymes a cell manufactures.The enzymes impart to the cell its characteristic chemical pattern by their abilityto facilitate various chemical reactions in a specific manner. Gilbert (who sharedthe award with Paul Berg and Frederick Sanger) made significant breakthroughsregarding the way in which DNA, as carrier of genetic traits, governs thechemical machinery of the cell. Gilbert and Sanger independently developeddifferent methods to determine the exact sequence of nucleotide building blocksin DNA. In particular, Gilbert investigated the structure of those parts of abacterial chromosome which control the reading of the genetic message. The investigations of Berg, Gilbert and Sanger have given us detailedinsight into the chemical basis of the genetic machinery in living organisms.Their work will play a decisive role in efforts to understand the nature of cancer,as in this disease there is a malfunction in the control, by the genetic material, ofthe growth and division of cells.AFOSR Funding Began: 1959 27
  28. 28. Nicolaas Bloembergen (Harvard University, Cambridge, MA)Arthur Schawlow (Stanford University, Stanford, CA)Kai Siegbahn (Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden)PHYSICS: 1981 AFOSR-funded Nicolaas Bloembergen and Arthur Schawlow were co-recipients of the 1981 Physics Nobel for their "contribution to the developmentof laser spectroscopy." AFOSR also funded Kai M. Siegbahn whose Nobelprize was awarded "for his contribution to the development of high-resolution electron spectroscopy." Bloembergens contributions to non-linear optics and spectroscopyadvanced both nonlinear theory and development of instrumentation. Theresulting impact during the last 20 years has been significant across science andengineering disciplines. For example, his findings for "four wave mixing" arebeing extended to develop advanced technology for non-contact NDE (non-destructive evaluation) of airframes which greatly benefits the Air Force and DoD.Recently a laser ultrasonic system was developed that is capable of detectingdamage in aging airframe structures and engine components without havingphysical contact with them. In the 1950s, Arthur Schawlow collaborated with Nobel Laureate CharlesTownes on maser and laser theory and design. They sought ways to extend themaser principle to amplify electromagnetic waves into shorter wavelengths ofinfrared and visible light. Schawlows solution was to build a cavity consisting ofa synthetic ruby that would serve as a resonator for light waves. His work wasimportant toward development of techniques for "pumping" energy into materialssuc as ruby and carbon dioxide. When such materials have been pumped, theycan be induced to "lase," to emit that extra energy as a beam of coherent light. The award to Kal Siegbahn was for his work in electron spectroscopy, orthe analysis of electrons expelled from atomic systems. Before his work,electron spectroscopy was limited. When a substance was excited withradiation, the energy of the electrons emitted could not be analyzed in their 28
  29. 29. entirety. In 1954, Siegbahn developed a type of spectrometer that provided amore accurate analysis of the electrons energy and electromagnetic spectrum.This work contributed to the development of high-tech polymer materials used ina wide variety of applications to include the aerospace industry.AFOSR Funding Began: 1956 (Siegbahn); 1975 (Bloembergen); 1981(Schawlow) 29
  30. 30. Kenichi Fukui (Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan)Roald Hoffman (Cornell University)CHEMISTRY: 1981 Dr. Kenichi Fukui and Dr. Roald Hoffman were jointly awarded the NobelPrize for Chemistry in 1981 "for their theories, developed independently,concerning the course of chemical reactions." Dr. Fukui did experimental work in organic chemistry (the chemistry ofcompounds containing carbon), including fossil fuels -- oil, gas, and coal. In1952, he discovered that one could understand chemical reactions in terms ofthe density of electron clouds around reacting atoms. It was in the mid-1960sthat Dr. Hoffman worked with 1965 Chemistry Nobel winner R. B. Woodward atHarvard, demonstrating outstanding achievements in experimentally building upcomplex organic molecules. Much earlier, in the mid-1950s, Fukui developed thetheory that during chemical reactions molecules share loosely bonded electrons,which occupy so-called frontier orbitals. This was the key for Fukui and Hoffman,who, working independently, found that “the symmetry properties of frontierorbitals could explain certain reaction courses that had previously been difficult tounderstand.” Their frontier orbital theory became a powerful tool forunderstanding the reactivity of molecules. This theory advanced theunderstanding of the mechanism of chemical reactions, especially in theproduction of organic compounds; understanding of the path of chemicalreactions and on the geometric shapes of reacting molecules. This led to otherdiscoveries and, in particular, the development of new pharmaceuticals.AFOSR Funding Began: 1962 (Fukui); 1980 (Hoffman) 30
  31. 31. David Hubel (Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA)Thorsten Wiesel (Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA)PHYSIOLOGY/MEDICINE: 1981 AFOSR-funded scientists Drs. David H. Hubel and Thorsten N. Wieselwon a Nobel prize for Physiology and Medicine in 1981 for their "discoveriesconcerning information processing in the visual system." In 1958 Hubel and Wiesel decided to study the mechanisms of the brainsvisual system. In experiments with cats and monkeys, they used tiny conductorsinserted into the brain to record how various visual stimuli activate different cellsat different locations within the visual cortex. They also injected radioactivelylabeled amino acids into the retina under specific conditions of stimulation. Theresearchers were then able to trace the exact path of the amino acids, therebyuncovering a route of transmission for nerve impulses under specific conditions.Some years later, Wiesel and Hubel demonstrated that the brains ability to see isformed through use of the eyes in the first few weeks after birth. This prompteddoctors to immediately correct congenital cataracts or crossed eyes. Their primary discoveries in vision suggested both the elementary units ofvisual analysis and a logic by which the brain could conjoin these units torepresent visual scenes. Computer algorithms that incorporate similar analysisand logic are now a mainstay of automatic systems for image recognition andspeech recognition. Many in todays military benefit from their discovery ofmotion-sensitive cortical cells, which led to the study of how humans detect andtrack moving targets.AFOSR Funding Began: 1959 31
  32. 32. Subramanyan Chandrasekhar (University of Chicago, Chicago, IL)William Fowler (California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA)PHYSICS: 1983 Subramanyan Chandrasekhar and William A. Fowler, both funded byAFOSR, were co-recipients of the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1981.Chandrasekhar won for his "theoretical studies of the physical processesimportant to the structure and evolution of the stars." Fowler was honoredfor his "theoretical and experimental studies of the nuclear reactions ofimportance in the formation of the chemical elements in the universe." Chandrasekhar developed many theories that changed the way peoplelook at the universe. His initial research involved stellar evolution and the theoryof white dwarfs. At the time, astronomers were beginning to notice that stars varyin size and temperature, which indicated what phase a star was in its life. Thecommon belief stated that stars in their final stages would become white dwarfsbecause they would eventually cool. Chandrasekhar deduced that not all starscould become white dwarfs. He discovered that only stars with a mass up to 1.44times that of the sun could become a white dwarf. In a massive star, equilibriumbetween gas pressures and gravity cannot occur. Thus, the star would not beable to collapse on itself and become a white dwarf. This boundary for stars isknown as the Chandrasekhar limit. His work on astrophysics and stellar dynamics was seminal in thedevelopment of models of nucleosynthesis and thermonuclear reactions. Suchknowledge was critical in the development of the U.S. thermonuclear arsenal. Inaddition, his work led to models for the solar interior, which permitteddevelopment of a capability to perform space weather forecasting. Fowler studied how chemical elements are formed in nuclear reactions,especially in the formation of stars. He also studied the radio emissions ofquasars and the functioning of subatomic particles such as neutrinos. Fordecades he investigated the nuclear reactions believed to occur in stellarinteriors. 32
  33. 33. Fowler was primarily concerned with studies of fusion reactions -- how thenuclei of lighter chemical elements fuse to create the heavier ones in a processknown as nucleosynthesis. In 1957, in the seminal paper "Synthesis of theElements in the Stars," Fowler showed that all of the elements from carbon touranium could be produced by nuclear processes in stars, starting only with thehydrogen and helium produced in the Big Bang. This work put Fowler and hiscollaborators at the forefront of some of the most central issues in modernphysics and cosmology: the formation of the chemical elements inside stars; theBig Bang origin of the universe; and the current "dark matter" debate over whatmakes up most of the universe.AFOSR Funding Began: 1960 (Chandrasekhar); 1960 (Fowler) 33
  34. 34. Dudley Herschbach (Harvard University, Cambridge, MA)John Polanyi (University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada)Yuan T. Lee (University of Chicago)CHEMISTRY: 1986 AFOSR-funded Dudley R. Herschbach, John C. Polanyi, and Yuan T. Leewere co-recipients of the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1981 for their"contributions concerning the dynamics of chemical elementaryprocesses.” Their work opened a new area of research in chemistry -- reactiondynamics -- that has provided a much more detailed understanding of howchemical reactions take place. Dr. Herschbach shared the prize for helping to apply the technology andtheory of physics to chemistry. He invented the "crossed molecular beamtechnique," which allows for the detailed analysis of chemical reactions throughthe use of supersonic molecular beams. Polanyi was cited for developing "themethod of infrared chemiluminescence, in which the extremely weak infraredemission from a newly formed molecule is measured and analyzed. He used thismethod to elucidate the detailed energy disposal during chemical reactions.Because he understood the source of this light emission he was able to proposevibrational and chemical lasers, the most powerful sources of infrared radiationever developed. Yuan T. Lee, who initially worked in cooperation withHerschbach, developed the method of crossed molecular beams towards its usefor general reactions, most notably, using this method for the study of importantreactions for relatively large molecules. Combined, the work of this trio provided the fundamental understandingabout the details of how reactions occur at the atomic and molecular levels. Theirpioneering work was pivotal in the development of the first chemical lasers thatwould form the basis for numerous DoD laser-based research efforts. Their workon reaction dynamics and molecular structure also contributed to thedevelopment and validation of theoretical models of quantum chemistry. These 34
  35. 35. models are now routinely used in the DoD to guide the synthesis of newcompounds, such as energetic materials, and to predict the energy release inreactions, which are applied for use in modeling rocket plumes and signatures.AFOSR Funding Began: 1979 (Herschbach); 1981 (Polanyi); 1971 (Lee) 35
  36. 36. Donald Cram (University of California, Los Angeles, CA)CHEMISTRY: 1987) Donald J. Cram was co-recipient of the 1987 Nobel Prize for Chemistryfor "development and use of molecules with structure-specific interactionsof high selectivity." Cram is best known for his role in developing what is now known as host-guest chemistry. The work involves creating synthetic host molecules that mimicsome of the actions enzymes perform in cells. Over a 30-year period, Cram andhis colleagues designed and prepared more than 1,000 hosts, each with its ownchemical and physical properties that would attract and bind specific guestmolecules. He succeeded in synthesizing molecules that are able to behave likethe molecules of living things, in that they "recognize" and attach themselves tospecific atoms. The molecules Cram produced have many practical applications. They areused to control chemical reactions. They also are used in medicines, deliveringactive ingredients in controlled dosages long after the medicine has been taken.AFOSR Funding Began: 1962 36
  37. 37. Melvin Schwartz: (Stanford University, Stanford, CA, and Digital Pathways International, Inc., Mountain View, CA)PHYSICS: 1988 Melvin Schwartz, Leon Lederman, and Jack Steinberger, shared the 1988Nobel Prize in Physics, “for the neutrino beam method and thedemonstration of the doublet structure of the leptons through thediscovery of the muon neutrino.” The work carried out in concert by Schwartz, Lederman, and Steinbergerduring the 1960s came out of discussions at Columbia University regarding aneed to find a feasible method of studying the effect of weak forces at highenergy levels. It was Melvin Schwartz who suggested employing a beam ofneutrinos for this purpose and work commenced to design a complimentarydetector for measuring neutrino reactions. The team was successful in building asophisticated detector which excluded unwanted particles from the neutrinobeam. This first successful neutrino beam experiment has been usedextensively for investigating the weak force and the quark structure of matter, aswell as the neutrino itself. In the 1970s Dr. Schwartz went on to investigate state of the artapproaches to the secure management of data communications. It was in thisarea that AFOSR issued several contracts to Dr. Schwartz to explore ways toensure the integrity, viability, and increased capacity of Air Forcetelecommunications systems.AFOSR Funding Began: 1970 37
  38. 38. Elias J. Corey (Harvard University, Cambridge, MA)CHEMISTRY: 1990 Elias Corey received the 1990 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, “for hisdevelopment of the theory and methodology of organic synthesis.”Thought by many to be one of the greatest living chemists, Cory is most famousfor his seminal and overarching discoveries and development of theory in thefield of organic synthesis—the construction of organic molecules via chemicalprocesses. Corey’s Nobel Prize recognized his formal approach to synthesisdesign, based on retrosynthetic analysis, whereby the research is plannedbackwards from the product, using standardized rules and procedures. Corey’sretrosynthetic analysis begins with the planned structure of the hoped formolecule and an ensuing analysis of which bonds must be broken in turn—simplifying the structure in a formalized retrograde approach. Corey hasdeveloped several new synthetic reagents as well as numerous reactions whichhave become commonplace in the field. Corey’s frontier-breaking work has been fundamental to the direct orinferential advancement and facilitation of numerous Air Force requirements inflight medicine.AFOSR Funding Began: 1968 38
  39. 39. Jerome Friedman (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA)Henry Kendall (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA)PHYSICS: 1990 Jerome Friedman, Henry Kendall, and Richard Taylor (StanfordUniversity), received the 1990 Nobel Prize in Physics, for their pioneeringinvestigations concerning deep inelastic scattering of electrons on protonsand bound neutrons, which have been of essential importance for thedevelopment of the quark model in particle physics.” This award recognizeda significant breakthrough in our understanding of the basic structure of matter. In 1963, Friedman and Kendall joined forces with Taylor and others toconduct experiments at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center. This MIT/SLACcollaboration resulted in a series of measurements of inelastic electron scatteringfrom the proton and the neutron which provided the first direct evidence of theinternal quark sub-structure of the nucleon. The accelerator experiments provedthat quarks formed the fundamental building blocks of protons and neutrons, andthat there is a glue which binds the quarks together—gluons. These discoveriesbegot a new era in the history of physics. Among other contributions, AFOSR funding for Friedman and Kendallresulted in enhanced nuclear instrumentation and particle accelerator advancesat the Air Force Cambridge Research Laboratory.AFOSR Funding Began: 1961 (Friedman); 1961 (Kendall) 39
  40. 40. Rudolph A. Marcus (California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA)CHEMISTRY: 1992 Rudolph Marcus was the recipient of the 1992 Nobel Prize in Chemistry"for his contributions to the theory of electron transfer reactions inchemical systems." Marcus is best known for his exceptional theoretical work on electrontransfer and the fact that his efforts in this area have resulted in basic chemicaltheory of great practical consequence in the field. The Marcus Theory describesand makes predictions concerning photochemical production of fuel,chemiluminescence (cold light), the conductivity of electrically conductingpolymers, corrosion, and many other chemical reactions. It was in the early1960s that AFOSR funded Dr. Marcus when he was engaged in the researchand publication of a series of papers on electron transfer reactions. His work leddirectly to the solution of the problem of greatly varying reaction rates.AFOSR Funding Began: 1962 40
  41. 41. Mario Molina (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA)CHEMISTRY: 1995 Mario Molina, Paul Crutzen and Sherwood Rowland won the 1995Chemistry prize for their "work in atmospheric chemistry, particularlyconcerning the formation and decomposition of ozone." It was the first timea Nobel had been awarded to a Mexican American, and also the first time theNobel Committee had recognized leaders in environmental science. These threechemists have all made pioneering contributions to explaining how ozone isformed and decomposes through chemical processes in the atmosphere. Molina presenting the first definitive demonstration that human actions canharm the environment on a global scale. In 1974, Molina hypothesized thatchlorofluorocarbons, or CFCs, then a widely used ingredient of aerosol cans, airconditioners, and refrigerators, were depleting the ozone layer. Stratosphericozone protects the planet from the suns harmful ultraviolet rays. Without it, plantand animal life as we know it could not exist on the planet, at least on land. Molinas initial work was greeted with skepticism, but by 1979 he hadproven his theory, and alarmed by news of an "Achilles heel" in the atmosphere,the public demanded action. Manufacturers looked for alternatives to CFCs. Thisflurry of action, including a ban on CFCs as propellants in spray cans in the US,took place despite the fact that no one had observed any loss of stratosphericozone. The discovery of the hole in the ozone layer above Antarctica in 1980increased the sense of urgency that CFCs should be widely banned. In 1987, an international accord known as the Montreal Protocol wassigned to phase out the use of CFCs in developed and developing countries.Molina went on to prove the connection between CFCs and the Antarctic ozonehole by proposing a new series of chemical reactions that was confirmed in 1991. Dr. Molina was funded by AFOSR as part of an effort to assess the impactof Air Force space launch operations on the environment. Molina investigatedthe potential catalytic activity of aluminum oxide particulates exhausted from solidrocket motors on atmospheric processes, including ozone depletion.AFOSR Funding Began: 1995 41
  42. 42. Richard E. Smalley (Rice University)CHEMISTRY: 1996 Richard Smalley shared the 1996 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Robert F.Curl, Jr. (Rice University) and Sir Harold W. Kroto (University of Sussex,Brighton, U.K.) “…for their discovery of fullerenes.” Basically, what Smalley, Curl, and Kroto discovered in 1985 was that theelement carbon could be made into new forms that can create enclosed shelldesigns, particularly in the shape of a ball—a European soccer (foot)ball. To beprecise, this unique form was named the “buckminsterfullerene” after theAmerican architect R. Buckminster Fuller and his geodetic dome design. Theseclusters that contained 60 carbon atoms resulted in a very stable molecularstructure of great symmetry. Other carbon clusters were produced thatcontained additional carbon atoms also resulting in stable structures. These new fullerene carbon clusters not only produced unique properties,but opened up an entirely new branch of chemistry related to their production,manipulation, and application in the fields of astrochemistry, superconductivityand materials development. For example, three dimensional polymers andnanotubes—employed on a fullerene template—may greatly impact materialsdevelopment. AFOSR first provided funding to Dr. Smalley in 1972 when he researchedlaser spectroscopy of supersonic molecular beams and its application to thenitrogen dioxide spectrum. Additional laser spectroscopy programs continuedthroughout the next decade and recent AFOSR support is dedicated to singlewall nanotube growth research.AFOSR Funding Began: 1972 42
  43. 43. Steven Chu (Stanford University, Stanford, CA)PHYSICS: 1997 Dr. Steven Chu shared the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1997 with two othersfor "development of methods to cool and trap atoms with laser light." Dr. Chus method of cooling and trapping atoms with laser lights providesthe foundation for atom interferometers, atom lasers and more precise frequencystandards, such as the basis for atomic clocks. These clocks, used in space andearth navigation to pinpoint a position, are expected to result in a 1000-foldincrease in accuracy. Physics is not the only area the improved time standard has generated apositive ripple effect. Other branches of science have been influenced by Dr.Chus discoveries. They include: a new way of understanding polymer behavior(coatings, friction, injection molding); direct studies of biological interactions(DNA behavior, bacterial interactions); insight into novel forms of matter (Bose-Einstein condensation, atom interferometer); and a legacy of graduate studentsto enrich the U.S. talent pool. The Air Force benefit is significant thanks to Dr. Chus work. Navigationand control systems, smaller electronic circuits with greater density, and covertand encrypted communications will witness marked improvements.AFOSR Funding Began: 1988 43
  44. 44. Daniel Tsui (Princeton University, Princeton, NJ)PHYSICS: 1998 Dr. Daniel Tsui shared the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1998 for the"discovery of a new form of quantum fluid with fractionally chargedexcitations." Dr. Tsui developed his award-winning idea during a long and productivecareer with Bell Labs. He then joined Princeton University where he usedAFOSR sponsorship to forward extensions of that work. Tsuis efforts led tominiaturized, high-performance millimeter wave components that are usedextensively in surveillance and communications systems. Tsui made refined studies of the quantum Hall effect using inversionlayers in materials of ultra-high purity. Plateaus appeared in the Hall effect notonly for magnetic fields corresponding to the filling of orbits with one, two, three,etc, electron charges, but also for fields corresponding to fractional charges. Thiscould be understood only in terms of a new kind of quantum fluid, where themotion of independent electrons of charge e is replaced by excitations in a multi-particle system which behave (in a strong magnetic field) as if charges of The smaller, faster components expected to be developed from Dr. Tsuisbreakthrough will play a key role in helping the Air Force to achieve its goal ofreducing the weight and volume of electronic circuits by 75 to 80 percent earlythis century.AFOSR Funding Began: 1985 44
  45. 45. Ahmed Zewail (California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA)CHEMISTRY: 1999) Dr. Ahmed Zewail took home the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1999 forhis "studies of the transition states of chemical reactions usingfemtosecond spectrocopy." Dr. Zewails pioneering research showed that it is possible, with rapid lasertechnique, to see how atoms in a molecule move during a chemical reaction. Hisinsights have helped scientists understand how certain molecules aresynthesized, how energy is released in reactions and how the outcome ofchemical reactions might be controlled. Using these ultrafast lasers, Zewail was able to image chemical reactionsas bonds form and break in real time, or at a scale of femtoseconds - a millionthof a billionth of a second. Dubbed "femtochemistry," it has allowed scientists tounderstand how and why certain chemical reactions take place but not others.Zewails work also helped scientists explain why the speed and yield of reactionsdepend on temperatures. As a result, scientists the world over are studyingprocesses with femtosecond spectrocopy in gases, in solids, in fluids, onsurfaces and in polymers. The Air Force has benefited from Zewails prize-winning work, focusingtheir applications on better understanding and controlling the release of energy inchemical reactions in systems, such as novel rocket propellants and theinteractions of aerospace vehicles with their environments.AFOSR Funding Began: 1986 45
  46. 46. Alan Heeger (University of California, Santa Barbara, CA)Alan G. MacDiarmid (University of Pennsylvania)CHEMISTRY: 2000 Dr. Alan J. Heeger, Alan G. MacDiarmid and Hideki Shirakawa(of the University of Tsukuba, Japan) jointly won the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in2000 for "the discovery and development of conductive polymers." Heeger’s research in the 1970s focused on conductive polymers. He andtwo associates found that a thin film of polyacetylene, when oxidized with iodinevapor, exhibited an electrical conductivity increase of a billion times; turning aninsulator to a conductor. MacDiarmid’s 1970s research was also along the sameline of effort. A 1972 AFOSR-sponsored research report by MacDiarmidconcerned an even-electron paramagnetic silicon species which confirmedelectron transfer. These discoveries led to a new field of carbon-based electronics that havewide application and benefit for the Air Force. This pioneering work pushed thefield of polymer research from primarily addressing structural applications toother potential applications typically addressed by semiconducting materials.Scientists and engineers no longer speculate about "plastic airplanes" and"plastic engines." Today, "plastic electronics" and "plastic lasers" are targets ofresearch supported by all the services and agencies within the Department ofDefense. This Nobel winning research will also lead to an Air Force and commercialreality in the near future, as plastic display panels -- like those found in a varietyof hand-held devices -- are developed.AFOSR Funding Began: 1988 (Heeger); 1970 (MacDiarmid) 46
  47. 47. Jack Kilby (Texas Instruments, Dallas, TX)PHYSICS: 2000 Jack Kilby, an AFOSR-funded scientist, received half of the 2000 NobelPrize for Physics for his part "in the invention of the integrated circuit,"-- theother half was shared with AFOSR-funded Dr. Herbert Kroemer and anotherphysicist. There are few living men whose insights and professionalaccomplishments have changed the world. Jack Kilby is one of these men. Hisinvention of the monolithic integrated circuit - the microchip – almost 50 yearsago at Texas Instruments (TI), laid the conceptual and technical foundation forthe entire field of modern microelectronics. It was this breakthrough that madepossible the sophisticated high-speed computers and large-capacitysemiconductor memories of todays information age. Kilby also was one of the first people to suggest that semiconductorscould be developed for use in Air Force weapon systems. As a result, the firstMinuteman II computer was successfully flight tested in May 1964. Early ballisticmissile tests with Kilbys integrated circuits largely assured the acceptance ofsemiconductor technology for other military and commercial uses.AFOSR Funding Began: 1958 47
  48. 48. Herbert Kroemer (University of California, Santa Barbara, CA)PHYSICS: 2000 Dr. Herbert Kroemer, an AFOSR-funded physicist, shared half of his 2000Nobel Prize for Physics with another physicist - the other half going to AFOSR-funded scientist Professor Jack Kilby - for "developing semiconductorheterostructures used in high-speed and opto-electronics." Kroemer was the first to propose the use of thin layers of semiconductingmaterials, known as heterostructures -- novel composites of two or morematerials -- to develop the heterostructure transistor. Kroemer analyzedtheoretically the mobility of electrons and holes in heterostructure junctions. Hispropositions led to the build up of transistors, later called HEMTs (high electronmobility transistors), which are very important in todays high-speed electronics.The new transistor, relying on these composites, made significant improvementsover conventional transistors in current amplification and high-frequencyapplications. Kroemer and a colleague, working independently, went on to create theheterostructure laser, an innovation crucial to the development of fiber opticcommunications. Dr. Kroemers revolutionary ideas marked the beginning of the era ofmodern optoelectronic devices that have affected the way the Air Force and thepopulace at-large interact, such as through radio link satellites, the Internet,mobile phones, CD players.AFOSR Funding Began: 1995 48
  49. 49. Paul Greengard (Rockefeller University, New York, NY)Eric R. Kandel (National Center for Scientific Research, Paris (EOARD))PHYSIOLOGY/MEDICINE: 2000 Dr. Paul Greengard and Eric R. Kandel shared the 2000 Nobel Prize formedicine with one other neuroscientist, Arvid Carlsson, for their discoveriesregarding "signal transduction in the nervous system." Greengards research, begun more than 30 years ago, demonstrated themeans by which chemicals known as neurotransmitters carry signals betweennerve cells. These findings have resulted in the understanding of how the brainprocesses function and in the development of new drugs. He has alsodemonstrated that many effects -- both therapeutic and toxic -- of several classesof common antipsychotic, hallucinogenic and antidepressant drugs can beexplained in terms of distinct neurochemical actions which affect the transmissionof nerve signals in the brain. Under AFOSR sponsorship, Greengardexperimented with large nerve cells to understand the molecular activity ofsynapse transmission. Eric Kandel’s effort’s were supported early on by AFOSR through theirforeign detachment, the European Office of Aerospace Research andDevelopment. His 1964 paper, the Mechanism of Prolonged HeterosynapticFacilitation, was early foundational research for follow on efforts in signaltransduction. Greengard, Kandel and Carlsson developed a general model whichprovides a rational explanation, at the molecular and cellular levels, of themechanism by which stimuli -- both electrical and chemical -- producephysiological responses in individual nerve cells. This knowledge has led to abetter understanding of the brains function in perception, cognition and action. Inturn, this provides a solid scientific basis for designing equipment and jobs tomatch human capabilities and limitations.AFOSR Funding Began: 1963 (Kandel); 1984 (Greengard) 49
  50. 50. Wolfgang Ketterle (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)PHYSICS: 2001 The 2001 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded jointly to Eric A. Cornell,Wolfgang Ketterle and Carl E. Wieman "for the achievement of Bose-Einsteincondensation in dilute gases of alkali atoms, and for early fundamentalstudies of the properties of the condensates". The Bose-Einstein Condensate (BEC) is a new form of matter. “Einsteinpredicted that if a gas of such atoms were cooled to a very low temperature allthe atoms would suddenly gather in the lowest possible energy state [as when]drops of liquid form from a gas, hence the term condensation.” Cornell andWieman produced such a condensate from rubidium atoms, while Ketterle,working independently, worked with sodium atoms. The sodium atom approachresulted in the production and manipulation of many more atoms than therubidium approach. It is the manipulation of such atoms which is significant inthat the process has revolutionary implications for employing such atoms in thefields of precise measurement and material structures at the nanotechnologylevel. Beginning in 1990 and later, AFOSR supported Ketterle’s work dealingdirectly with research that led to the Nobel award, for example: Atom Cooling byTime-Dependent Potentials, Trapping and Focusing Ground State Atoms withStatic Fields and Evaporative Cooling of Sodium Atoms.AFOSR Funding Began: 1990 50
  51. 51. Daniel Kahneman (Princeton University, Princeton, NJ)ECONOMICS: 2002 Daniel Kahneman received half of the 2002 Bank of Sweden Prize inEconomic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel 2002 "for having integratedinsights from psychological research into economic science, especiallyconcerning human judgment and decision-making under uncertainty." In Dr. Kahneman’s case, AFOSR funding began in 1977 when the LifeSciences Directorate supported his ground-breaking work on human perception,attention, and decision-making. Along with psychologist Amos Twersky,Kahneman studied the determinants of human choice in risky situations.Kahneman and Twersky showed that a person’s decisions depend on how thedecision problem is framed or described, and this dependence results indecisions that deviate in predictable ways from the rational choice strategy. Thisresearch directly supported one of the long-standing goals of the directorate foradvancement in model perception and cognition for improved humanperformance.AFOSR Funding Began: 1977 51
  52. 52. John B. Fenn (Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA)CHEMISTRY: 2002 Fenn shared one-half of the 2002 Nobel Prize in Chemistry “for thedevelopment of methods for identification and structure analyses ofbiological macromolecules” and “for the development of soft desorptionionization methods for mass spectrometric analyses of biologicalmacromolecules.” Early AFOSR support for Dr. John Fenn concerned molecules seeded inatomic beams. AFOSR continued to support Fenn during the 1980s, while hewas at Yale University, with several contracts dealing with molecular collisionprocesses. These studies and other associated systems were then used tostudy fundamental chemical reaction dynamics, which ultimately resulted in theNobel Prize for chemistry for Herschbach, Lee and Polanyi, in 1986. The 2002Nobel Prize in chemistry for Fenn was for his work in electrospray massspectroscopy that grew out of Fenn’s experience and expertise from his earliermolecular research.AFOSR Funding Began: 1975 52
  53. 53. Paul C. Lauterbur (Johns Hopkins University)PHYSIOLOGY/MEDICINE: 2003 The 2003 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was awarded jointly toPaul C. Lauterbur and Peter Mansfield, “…for their discoveries concerningmagnetic resonance imaging.” This Nobel was awarded for advancements by Lauterbur and Mansfieldregarding key discoveries concerning the development of the technique tovisualize different structures (organs) within the human body. These findingsprovided the basis for the development of magnetic resonance into a usefulimaging method. It was Lauterbur who discovered the process to create two-dimensionalimages of structures that could not be visualized by other techniques discoveredprevious to this. In 1973, “…he described how addition of gradient magnets tothe main magnet made it possible to visualize a cross section of tubes withordinary water surrounded by heavy water. No other imaging method candifferentiate between ordinary and heavy water.” Lauterbur’s work, whencombined with Mansfield’s discoveries, led to a practical method of obtainingmagnetic resonance images. Lauterbur received funding from AFOSR only a few short years afterAFOSR was established. His research grant at that time related to the study ofnuclear magnetic resonance exchange reactions. Today, the non-invasive andharmless MRI procedure is a common diagnostic tool used many millions oftimes per year.AFOSR Funding Began: 1956 53
  54. 54. John L. Hall (University of Colorado, Boulder, CO)Roy J. Glauber (Harvard University, Cambridge, MA)Theodor W. Hansch (Max-Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, Garching,Germany)PHYSICS: 2005 Roy Glauber was honored with one-half of the 2005 Nobel Physics Prizefor “his contribution to the quantum theory of optical coherence.” John Hallshared one-half of the award with Theodor W. Hansch, “for their contributionsto the development of laser precision spectroscopy, including the opticalfrequency comb technique.” Hall, Glauber and Hansch’s scientific career’s dealt with thecharacteristics of light, or more specifically, the properties of light on amacroscopic level (Hall and Hansch) and on a microscopic level (Glauber).AFOSR funding for Glauber first began in 1962. In 1963 Glauber published aseminal work where he created a model for photodetection and explained thefundamental characteristics of different types of light. The work of Glauber andothers in the field of quantum optics led to the formulation that certain states oflight could not be described with classical wave theory. Glauber’s impact hasbeen so significant in this area that coherent states of light are known as Glauberstates. AFOSR supported Glauber’s quantum optics research throughout the1960’s and 1970s. John Hall first received funding from AFOSR in 1990 for research of“Stabilized Single-Frequency Operation of Visible Diode Lasers, High-ResolutionSpectroscopy, and Microwave-to-Visible Synthesis,” which, as with Glauber’sresearch, is directly related to the subsequent Nobel award. Hall’s research wassupported consistently by AFOSR through the next fifteen years as he refined thedevelopment of laser-based precision spectroscopy which ultimately led to evergreater accuracy in defining the quantum structure of matter. A major focus ofHall’s career, has been getting the frequency of various kinds of lasers stabilized,or fixed, to a very high degree. In his Nobel Lecture, Hall gratefully acknowledgedthe support of AFOSR. 54
  55. 55. Hansch was supported by AFOSR beginning in 1990 through his jointwork with two American colleagues at Stanford University relating to the searchfor a new laser regime of short pulse generation. Glauber was responsible for the established of Quantum Optics, “…inwhich quantum theory encompasses the field of optics….explain[ing] thefundamental differences between hot sources of light such as light bulbs, with amixture of frequencies and phases, and lasers which give a specific frequencyand phase.” Hall, Glauber and Hansch contributed significantly to scientific research ona very broad scale as they have greatly enhanced the precision of timemeasurements. They did this by making it possible to measure frequencies withan accuracy of fifteen digits. “Lasers with extremely sharp colors can now beconstructed, and with the frequency comb technique, precise readings can bemade of light of all colors. This technique makes it possible to carry out studiesof, for example, the stability of the constants of nature over time and to developextremely accurate clocks and improved GPS technology.”AFOSR Funding Began: 1962 (Glauber); 1990 (Hall); 1990 (Hansch) 55
  56. 56. Robert Grubbs (California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA)CHEMISTRY: 2005 Robert Grubbs shared the 2005 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with YvesChauvin and Richard Schrock, “for the development of the metathesismethod in organic synthesis.” The word metathesis is from the Greek words meta (meaning change),and thesis (meaning position), or more simply, to change places. In the workperformed by Grubbs, Chauvin and Schrock, the bonds between carbon atoms oforganic molecules are broken and new pairings take place. But what makes thispossible are the catalyst molecules which were developed by the threerespective chemists. When this process is taken further, different parts ofdifferent molecules can be combined to create new molecules with newproperties. Building on the previous research of Chauvin (who explained howmetathesis works), and Schrock (who created the first useful organic synthesiscatalysts), Grubbs achieved a breakthrough in 1992 with the first well-definedcatalysts for practical laboratory application. This practical application has foundvery broad use in the chemical industry with the development of new plastics,herbicides, drugs, and synthetic pheromones, which are produced moreefficiently, are simpler to use, and are more environmentally friendly. AFOSR funded Grubbs through a Multi-University Research Initiative(MURI) from 1987 through 2002 which centered on cyclohexadiene anddihydrocatechol polymerization.AFOSR Funding Began: 1987 56
  57. 57. Thomas C. Schelling (University of Maryland, College Park, MD)ECONOMICS: 2005 Thomas Schelling shared the 2005 Sveriges Riksbank Prize in EconomicSciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel with Robert Aumann, “for havingenhanced our understanding of conflict and cooperation through game-theory analysis.” It was during the 1950s, in the midst of the Cold War, that ThomasSchelling began to apply game theory to the issues of global security and thearms race. In 1964, Dr. Schelling’s began receiving AFOSR funding, severalyears after the publication of his landmark book, The Strategy of Conflict. Hisgame-theory research proposed the theory that in a conflict a party canstrengthen its position by actually weakening or limiting its options. Dr.Schelling’s bold idea prompted new developments in game theory and eventualapplication in various methods throughout the social sciences. AFOSR fundedan effort by Schelling in 1966 which resulted in a major scholarly study entitled,Strategic Analysis of Extra-Legal Internal Political Conflict, which was atheoretical study of the strategy employed by groups engaged in extra-legalconflict within states. As described by the Nobel awards committee: “Notably, his analysis ofstrategic commitments has explained a wide range of phenomena, from thecompetitive strategies of firms to the delegation of political decision power,” Inconcluding its award remarks, the committee praised Schelling for, “…havingenhanced our understanding of conflict and cooperation through game-theoryanalysis [and] his advancements have been proved to great relevance for conflictresolution and efforts to avoid war.”AFOSR Funding Began: 1960 57
  58. 58. George F. Smoot (University of California, Berkeley, CA)PHYSICS: 2006 George F. Smoot shared the 2006 Nobel Prize in Physics with John C.Mather “for their discovery of the blackbody form and anisotropy of thecosmic microwave background radiation.” This Nobel award in Physics is based on work which the two laureates didto gain a more precise understanding of the origins of galaxies and stars. Thefoundation of their work was provided by measurements derived from the COBE(Cosmic Background Explorer) satellite launched by NASA in 1989. The goalwas to utilize the COBE measurements to investigate the cosmic microwavebackground radiation of the universe, which ultimately provided increasedsupport for the Big Bang theory of the origins of the universe, as opposed to thesteady state theory. Additionally, the in depth study of the COBE measurementsmarked the beginning of cosmology as a precise science. Smoot had the responsibility of measuring the very slight variations in thetemperature of the cosmic microwave background radiation left over from theinitial big bang origin of the universe. The form of this radiation, and its varioustemperatures across respective wavelengths, resulted in a specific shape acrossthe entire spectrum whose form is known as blackbody radiation. Smoot’s taskof calculating the small variations in temperature across the blackbody in variousdirections is termed anisotropy. AFOSR first funded Smoot’s work in 1980 indirect support of anisotropic techniques, which can be applied to space-basedsurveillance requirements.AFOSR Funding Began: 1980 58
  59. 59. Yoichiro Nambu (University of Chicago)PHYSICS: 2008 Yoichiro Nambu shared the 2008 Nobel Prize in Physics with twoJapanese physicists Makoto Kobayashi and Toshihide Masskawa. Nambu wasawarded one-half of the Physics prize “for the discovery of the mechanism ofspontaneous broken symmetry in subatomic physics.” This Nobel award in Physics is based on work which Nambu did in the1960s and early 1970s under grants from the Air Force Office of ScientificResearch and other funding agencies. According to the official Nobel Museum press release, it was as early as1960 when Dr. Nambu “formulated his mathematical description of spontaneousbroken symmetry in elementary particle physics. Spontaneous broken symmetryconceals nature’s order under an apparently jumbled surface. It has proved to beextremely useful, and Nambu’s theories permeate the Standard Model ofelementary particle physics. The Model unifies the smallest building blocks of allmatter and three of nature’s four forces in one single theory.” Dr. Nambu’s groundbreaking work is of significant importance with relationto CERN’s particle accelerator as its capabilities are fully realized. Dr. Nambu’swork epitomizes the high risk, long term approach to AFOSR funding, as well ashighlighting the fact that AFOSR’s program managers have a proven track recordof supporting future world class talent early on in their careers.AFOSR Funding Began: 1965 59
  60. 60. Andre Geim (University of Manchester, Manchester, United Kingdom)Konstantin Novoselov (University of Manchester, Manchester, UnitedKingdom)Physics: 2010 The Nobel Prize in Physics 2010 was awarded jointly to Andre Geim andKonstantin Novoselov "for groundbreaking experiments regarding the two-dimensional material graphene." In 2004, Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov of the University ofManchester, isolated graphene, a single atomic layer of carbon from graphite. Itis an ancient material, but at the same time, completely new because thisthinnest ever material has turned out to be quite amazing. Graphene hasremarkable qualities: besides being the thinnest material imaginable, it isstronger than steel and far better than copper at conducting current; and forbeing almost transparent, it is so dense that not even a helium atom can passthrough it. This two dimensional material opens up a new world of materials andapplications: faster and more efficient graphene transistors and touch screenswill make for more robust and lightweight electronics, and new materialapplications can take advantage of the thin, elastic and lightweight features ofthis novel material for a wide variety of plastic/composite material applications. In 2008 AFOSRs European Office of Aerospace Research andDevelopment (EOARD) initiated grants with Dr. Geims group to explore theelectronic properties of the material. Follow-on grants have led to visits betweenthe Manchester team and AFRL researchers, as well as exchanges of samplesand data. DoD is showing strong and robust interest in seeing what flat carboncan achieve, and EOARD provided the critical link to the inventors of thisrevolutionary material.AFOSR Funding Began: 2008 60