CAP prize winners at Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics


Rob Myers, Winner, 2005 CAP/CRM Prize in Theoretical and Mathematical Physics

Professor Myers, a Long-Term Researcher at Perimeter Institute and outstanding theoretical physicist on the world stage, received the award for his contributions to gravitational physics and string theory. His work is significant for observational prospects to detect cosmic strings and has had a major influence on foundational questions including: understanding which dimensions of spacetime are consistent with string theory, the dielectric response of branes to a background field, the relation between gauge theory and string theory, and which space time singularities cannot be resolved by a physical theory.

Rob has played a pivotal role in the development of string theory and continues to use his creativity to open new ground. In addition to being a frequently cited theoretical physicist, the high quality of Rob's research work has been recognized through other prestigious research awards, including the receipt of the CAP's Herzberg medal in 1999. Three times over he has won a prize in the annual Gravity Research Foundation Prize Essay Competition. Although this is a very prestigious competition, with other first place winners including physicists such as Steven Hawking, Rob is one of only two physicists throughout the entire history of the competition to have won first prize more than once.

Besides being a first-class researcher, Rob Myers has been instrumental in building theoretical physics in general, and string theory in particular, within Canada. He brought string theory to McGill University more than a decade before other Canadian institutions began to move into this area. He was among the first three researchers hired by Perimeter Institute, and his many efforts have helped define the first-class research excellence at PI.

Eric Poisson, Winner, 2005 CAP Herzberg Medal for Outstanding Achievement by a Physicist ages 40 or less

Eric Poisson, an affiliate member of Perimeter Institute and a Professor of Physics at the University of Guelph, received the award for his work in the physics of black holes and gravitational waves. The medal has been awarded annually since 1970 for outstanding achievement in any field of research by a physicist who, in the year of the award, is not more than 40 years of age.

As a graduate student with Werner Israel, Eric initiated the study of black hole interiors and the properties of the singularities at their core; however, his main work has focused on the study of black holes and neutron stars as sources of gravitational waves. Eric has been a pioneer in various approaches to calculating the detailed profile of gravitational radiation produced by binary systems. This theoretical research is both very important and timely as the calculation of accurate waveforms is essential for the successful operation of the new gravitational wave observatories, such as LIGO, which are just now coming online.

Source: Eurekalert & others

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