We are delighted to announce that Dr Christian Rüegg from the London Centre for Nanotechnology and Department of Physics and Astronomy at University College London is the 2010 recipient of the Nicholas Kurti European Science Prize.
During his time at ETH Zurich, and now as Reader and Royal Society University Research Fellow at University College London, Christian Rüegg has pioneered experimental work on a number of prototypical magnetic model materials, including low-dimensional arrays of quantum spins, so called spin dimer and ladder systems. Using mainly neutron spectroscopy in combination with high magnetic fields and low temperatures he was able to explore and control the exotic ground states and elementary excitations of magnetic matter near fundamental quantum phase transitions. Furthermore, he is a leading figure in an international collaboration, which ranges from synthetic chemists working on the discovery of new materials to leading theorists contributing to the interpretation of the fascinating physics realized in novel quantum magnets.
Professor George Pickett of Lancaster University, chairman of the committee of senior scientists who assess the nominations, commented: “There was a very strong field of candidates for this year's Kurti prize, but the work of Christian Ruegg on quantum phase transitions and novel phases in magnetic materials was adjudged the best by a majority of the panel."
The Nicholas Kurti European Science Prize, sponsored by Oxford Instruments, is intended to recognise and promote outstanding achievements of young scientists in the field of physical sciences research and to support their career development. It is named after Professor Nicholas Kurti known for his distinguished work in ultra-low temperature physics at the Clarendon Laboratory, Oxford University. The prize winner receives a €8000 cash prize, a unique trophy and certificate. The winner also has the opportunity to present his work at a conference of his choice.
Previous winners of the prize include Prof. Lieven Vandersypen, Dr. Silvano De Franceschi, Dr. Andreas Wallraff, Dr. Kostantin Novoselov and Dr. John Morton.
More information on the prize can be found at: www.oxford-instruments.com/scienceprize Issued for and on behalf of Oxford Instruments NanoScience