Secretary of Energy announces seven E.O. Lawrence Award Winners

09/22/04

Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham today named the seven winners of the 2004 E.O. Lawrence Award. Each winner will receive a gold medal, a citation and $50,000. The award is given in seven categories for outstanding contributions in the broadly defined field of atomic energy.

"We are all enriched by the contributions these researchers have made ranging from engines with no moving parts to better ways to see the stars," Secretary Abraham said. "These awards, and the research for which they are given, show that DOE could easily be called the Department of Science and Energy."

The winners are:
Nathaniel Fisch, Princeton University, Princeton, N.J., and Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL);
Bette Korber, Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), Los Alamos, N.M.;
Claire Max, University of California, Santa Cruz, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), Livermore, Calif.;
Fred Mortensen, Los Alamos National Laboratory;
Richard J. Saykally, University of California, Berkeley, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory;
Ivan Schuller, University of California, San Diego; and,
Gregory W. Swift, Los Alamos National Laboratory.

The Lawrence Award was established in 1959 to honor the memory of the late Dr. Ernest Orlando Lawrence who invented the cyclotron (a particle accelerator) and after whom two major Energy Department laboratories in Berkeley and Livermore, Calif., are named. The Lawrence Awards will be presented at a ceremony in Washington, D.C., on November 8.

Fisch, a physicist, will receive the award in the nuclear technology category for his discovery of ways to use plasma waves to produce currents in fusion tokamaks. These toroidal currents enable tokamak reactors to operate continuously, which is necessary for an economical and practical fusion reactor. Fisch is professor of astrophysical sciences at Princeton University and associate director for academic affairs at PPPL.

Korber, a chemist, will be honored in the life sciences category for her studies delineating the genetic characteristics of the HIV virus and for her development of the Los Alamos HIV database, a foundation for HIV research for the scientific community. Korber is a technical staff member in the theoretical biology and biophysics group at LANL.

Max, an astrophysicist, will receive the award in the physics category, for her contributions to the theory of laser guide star adaptive optics and its application in ground-based astronomy to correct telescopic images for the blurring caused by light passing through the atmosphere. Max is professor and astronomer at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and a physicist at the Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics at LLNL.

Mortensen, a mechanical engineer, will be honored in the national security category for his contributions to nuclear weapons design and his expertise that has helped certify the safety and reliability of nuclear weapons in an era without nuclear testing. Mortensen is a project design leader in the thermonuclear applications group at LANL as well as a Laboratory Fellow.

Saykally, a chemist, will receive the award in the chemistry category for his invention of new, powerful methods such as velocity modulation spectroscopy to study the structure of molecular ions. Saykally is a professor at the University of California, Berkeley, and senior scientist with the Chemical Sciences Division of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Schuller, a physicist, will be honored in the materials research category for creating the field of metallic superlattices and recognizing the impact of these materials on magnetism and superconductivity. Schuller is a professor of physics in the Division of Physical Sciences at the University of California, San Diego.

Swift, a physicist, will receive the award in the environmental science and technology category for developing the theory of thermoacoustic heat engines and for designing and building these engines and refrigerators that use the power of sound to operate at high efficiency with no moving parts. Swift is a technical staff member in LANL's Condensed Matter and Thermal Physics Group as well as a Laboratory Fellow.

Source: Eurekalert & others

Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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