An-Pang Tsai wins inaugural Dubois Award

05/18/05

Award to be presented at Ninth International Conference on Quasicrystals

Ames, IA Citing his "fundamentally important discoveries of new quasicrystalline phases," Professor An-Pang Tsai of Sendai University, has been named as the winner of the inaugural Jean-Marie Dubois Award by the Advisory Board of the International Conference on Quasicrystals. The award, which consists of a $2,000 cash prize and a plaque, will be presented here on May 26 at the conference's closing banquet.

The award is named after pioneering quasicrystal researcher Professor Jean Marie Dubois of the Ecole des Mines de Nancy as a way to honor his research and his tireless efforts to the advance the field. The Dubois Award will be presented each time the International Conference on Quasicrystals is held, typically every two to three years at various sites around the world. Because the 2005 conference is being hosted by Ames Laboratory and Iowa State University, the award endowment is being administered by the Iowa State University Foundation.

An-Pang Tsai, formerly with the National Institute for Materials Science in Tsukuba, Japan, is being recognized for the work that he embarked upon as a graduate student at Tohoku University in the late 1980's, and which he has continued into the present day. That work has produced a remarkable string of discoveries of new quasicrystalline phases. He has discovered five main families: icosahedral Al-Cu-TM (TM: Fe, Ru, Os) in 1987 and 1988; decagonal Al-(Ni,Cu)-Co in 1989; icosahedral Al-Pd-(Mn,Re) (RE=rare earth) in 1990; Zn-Mg-RE in 1994; and icosahedral Cd-(Yb,Ca) binary in 2000.

Including derivatives from those systems, almost 90% of stable quasicrystalline alloys now available are based on Dr. Tsai's discoveries. His discoveries are not at all accidental, but stem from his excellent sense of alloy design based on electronic structure, atomic radius, chemical trends, and phase equilibria. His discoveries have had an enormous impact on the science of quasicrystals. They opened the door to the preparation of large, high-quality samples, which in turn made it possible to measure fundamental properties such as transport, magnetic, and tribological properties; to determine atomic structure (both bulk and surface); and to establish the profoundly important fact, within the scientific community, that quasicrystals are 'here to stay.' In many of the endeavors enabled by his discoveries, Dr. Tsai has also played a vigorous and direct role. One indication of the impact of Dr. Tsai's research is that his papers have been cited more than 2,000 times.

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