- Title: Science of "exotic" states of matter lands Nobel physics prize
- Date: 4th October 2016
- Summary: STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN (OCTOBER 4, 2016) (REUTERS) ****WARNING CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** EXTERIOR OF ROYAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES BUILDING WHERE NOBEL PRIZE FOR PHYSICS ANNOUNCEMENT IS MADE ROYAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES SECRETARY GENERAL, GORAN K. HANSSON ENTERING ROOM CAMERA OPERATOR (SOUNDBITE) (English) ROYAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES SECRETARY GENERAL, GORAN K. HANSSON, SAYING: "The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has decided to award the 2016 Nobel Prize in physics with one half to David J Thouless and the other half to F Duncan Haldane and J Michael Kosterlitz for theoretical discoveries of topological phase transitions and topological phases of matter." STILL PICTURES OF WINNERS DAVID THOULESS, DUNCAN HALDANE AND MICHAEL KOSTERLITZ (SOUNDBITE) (English) THORS HANS HANSSON, MEMBER OF THE NOBEL COMMITTEE FOR PHYSICS, EXPLAINING THE SCIENCE BEHIND THE PRIZE, HOLDING UP DIFFERENT BREAD ROLLS, SAYING: "If you're a topologists only one thing that is really interesting with these things in which they differ. This thing has no hole, the bagel has one hole, the pretzel has two holes. The number of holes is what the topologist would call a topological invariant and just as you cannot have half a hole or two and two thirds holes, you can for a topological invariant only have in digit numbers." GRAPHIC EXPLAINING WHAT TOPOLOGY IS PEOPLE LISTENING THORS HANS HANSSON SEEN ON MOBILE PHONE DISPLAY WIDE OF ROOM WITH THORS HANS HANSSON SPEAKING JOURNALIST GORAN HANSSON TALKING TO LAUREATE DUNCAN M. HALDANE ON PHONE STILL PICTURE OF HALDANE/ (SOUNDBITE) (English) DUNCAN M. HALDANE, SAYING: "Well, I was, as everyone else is, I was very surprised and very gratified." WIDE OF ROOM AS HALDANE IS SPEAKING HALDANE'S PICTURE ON COMPUTER SCREEN MEDIA REPRESENTATIVES (SOUNDBITE) (English) EVA OLSSON, PROFESSOR OF EXPERIMENTAL PHYSICS AT CHALMERS UNIVERSITY, SAYING: "First of all it's a theoretical discovery or theoretical discoveries. What is interesting is the properties, it's a correlation between properties and structure. The new thing is that now we are considering the position and the shape instead of only considering the distance when we are talking about the interactions and that is a new and fascinating thing about these discoveries." ROYAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES SIGN (SOUNDBITE) (English) EVA OLSSON, PROFESSOR OF EXPERIMENTAL PHYSICS AT CHALMERS UNIVERSITY, SAYING: "There are possibilities and there are potentials and the potentials are for materials in electronics and also in the future for quantum computers. " CAMERA OPERATOR
- Embargoed: 19th October 2016 13:46
- Keywords: Nobel physics announcement Alfred Nobel
- Location: STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN
- City: STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN
- Country: Sweden
- Topics: Health/Medicine
- Reuters ID: LVA00152LART3
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: British born scientists David Thouless, Duncan Haldane and Michael Kosterlitz won the 2016 Nobel Prize for Physics on Tuesday (October 4) for their studies of unusual states of matter, which may open up new applications in electronics.
Their discoveries, using advanced mathematics, had boosted research in condensed matter physics and raised hopes for uses in new generations of electronics and superconductors or future quantum computers, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said.
Thouless was awarded half the prize with the other half divided between Haldane and Kosterlitz.
Speaking on a crackly telephone line, Haldane said he was surprised when he had received the call earlier in the day.
"I was, as everyone else is, I was very surprised and very gratified," he said.
Although there are no practical applications today to the science, Eva Olsson, Professor of Experimental Physics at Chalmers University, said there were "possibilities and potentials".
"There are possibilities and there are potentials and the potentials are for materials in electronics and also in the future for quantum computers," she said.
Physics is the second of this year's crop of Nobels and comes after Japan's Yoshinori Ohsumi was awarded the prize for medicine on Monday.
As Nobel physics laureates, the trio of researchers join the ranks of some of the greatest names in science, including Albert Einstein, Niels Bohr and Marie Curie.
The prizes were first awarded in 1901 to honour achievements in science, literature and peace in accordance with the will of the Swedish dynamite inventor and business tycoon Alfred Nobel, who left much of his wealth to establish the award.
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