Cornell, Eric Allin

Cornell, Eric Allin,

1961–, American physicist, b. Palo Alto, Calif., Ph.D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1990. Since 1990, he has been a researcher at the Joint Institute for Laboratory Astrophysics in Boulder, Colo., a collaborative organization of the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the Univ. of Colorado. In 2001 Cornell and Carl WiemanWieman, Carl Edwin,
1951–, American physicist, b. Corvallis, Oreg., Ph.D. Stanford, 1977. He was a professor at the Univ. of Colorado from 1984 to 2006. In 2007, he joined the Univ. of British Columbia in Canada as director of the Carl Wieman Science Foundation Initiative.
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 shared the Nobel Prize in Physics with Wolfgang KetterleKetterle, Wolfgang,
1957–, German physicist, Ph.D. Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics, Garching, Germany, 1986. He has been a professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology since 1990.
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 for creating the first Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC; see condensatecondensate,
matter in the form of a gas of atoms, molecules, or elementary particles that have been so chilled that their motion is virtually halted and as a consequence they lose their separate identities and merge into a single entity.
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) in the laboratory and characterizing its properties. Cornell and Wieman produced the first condensate in an ultracold gas of rubidium atoms in 1995. Predicted by Albert EinsteinEinstein, Albert
, 1879–1955, American theoretical physicist, known for the formulation of the relativity theory, b. Ulm, Germany. He is recognized as one of the greatest physicists of all time.
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 in 1924, the creation of a BEC provided scientists with a new window into the world of quantum physics.
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