Discovery of quantum dots awarded Nobel Chemistry prize


Scientists Moungi Bawendi, Louis Brus and Alexei Ekimov have gained the 2023 Nobel prize in chemistry for “the invention and synthesis of quantum dots”.

The tiny dots illuminate laptop displays and tv screens and are utilized by docs to map tumours.

“The Nobel laureates … have succeeded in producing particles so small that their properties are decided by quantum phenomena. The particles, that are referred to as quantum dots, are actually of nice significance in nanotechnology,” the Nobel committee for chemistry stated in a press release.

“Researchers consider that sooner or later they may contribute to versatile electronics, tiny sensors, thinner photo voltaic cells and encrypted quantum communication.”

Nanoparticles and quantum dots are utilized in LED-lights and will also be used to information surgeons whereas eradicating most cancers tissue.

The greater than century-old prize is awarded by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and is value 11 million Swedish crowns ($1.57 million).

Earlier on Wednesday, the academy appeared to have inadvertently printed the names of the three scientists it stated had gained this yr’s Nobel Prize in chemistry.

Requested how he felt to listen to information of his award, Bawendi stated by telephone from the US: “very shocked, sleepy, shocked, surprising and really honoured.”

“I didn’t suppose that I might get it,” he added.

Among the many “fascinating and weird properties” of quantum dots is that they create totally different color lights, relying simply on the particle dimension, whereas preserving the atomic construction unchanged, Nobel committee for chemistry chair Johan Aqvist stated.

Bawendi is a professor on the Massachusetts Institute of Know-how, Brus is professor emeritus at Columbia College and Ekimov works for Nanocrystals Know-how.

Brus was employed by AT&T Bell Labs in 1972 the place he spent 23 years, devoting a lot of the time to learning nanocrystals.

Bawendi was born in Paris and grew up in France, Tunisia, and the US. He did his postdoctoral analysis below Brus then joined MIT in 1990 and have become professor in 1996.

Ekimov was born within the Soviet Union and labored for the Vavilov State Optical Institute earlier than shifting to the US.

In 1999, Ekimov was named chief scientist at Nanocrystals Know-how Inc.

The third of this yr’s crop of awards, the chemistry Nobel follows these for medication and physics introduced earlier this week.

Established within the will of Swedish dynamite inventor and chemist Alfred Nobel, the prizes for achievements in science, literature and peace have been awarded since 1901 with a couple of interruptions, primarily because of the world wars.

The economics prize is a later addition funded by the Swedish central financial institution.

Though the chemistry awards are typically overshadowed by the physics prize and its well-known winners akin to Albert Einstein, chemistry laureates embody many scientific greats, together with radioactivity pioneer Ernest Rutherford and Marie Curie, who additionally gained the physics prize.

Final yr’s chemistry award went to scientists Carolyn Bertozzi, Morten Meldal and Barry Sharpless for pioneering work in “click on chemistry”, discovering reactions that allow molecules snap collectively to create new compounds.