American Physical Society bestows 2 innovators Instrumentation Award

By @vitthernandez on
David Nygren
Physicist David Nygren from the University of Texas Arlington.

University of Texas Arlington physicist David Nygren, a member of the National Academy of Science, and Veljko Radeka of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory, have been honored with new American Physical Society's instrumentation award for their lifetime contributions in particle physics. 

The American Physical Society said that they chose the two distinguish men of science for their “widespread contributions and leadership in the development of new detector technologies and low-noise electronics instrumentation in particle physics as well as other fields, and in particular work leading to the development and instrumentation of large volume liquid argon time projection chambers that are now a key element in the global particle physics program."

David Nygren, a Presidential distinguished professor of physics in the University of Texas at Arlington's College of Science, has become a principal figure in American physics for discovering and developing the Time Projection Chamber (TPC) in the early 1970s.

TPC has enabled the accurate capture of results in high-energy particle collisions.  This machine is capable of providing complete, three-dimensional image of the ionisation deposited in a gas (or liquid) volume, which is utilised in detecting charged particles in a high-track-density environment.

“I am honored to be [one of] the first recipient[s] of this award. Since its origin, my Time Projection Chamber idea has evolved to include many other applications in physics such as the search for very rare events. Forty years after invention, it is rare indeed for a technique to display such adaptive powers,” Nygren said in his speech during the awarding ceremony.

Veljko Radeka, on the other hand, is one of the key figures in the development of the first noble liquid argon calorimeters, which is now being utilised in most physics experiments across the globe. He is also the brainchild of the highly sensitive low-noise electronics used in small signals from these detectors. One of his other works is the “cold electronics technology,” which is used in operating cryogenic liquid medium and improving Time Projection Chamber’s performance.

Veljko Radeka Veljko Radeka from the Brookhaven National Laboratory of the U.S. Department of Energy.

In 2012 , Radeka received the prestigious Marie Sklodowska-Curie Award from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, or IEEE, for his outstanding works on the “development of new radiation detectors, electronics, and systems that operate at the fundamental limits of performance, enabling discoveries in many areas of science.” 

“I am honored to be a co-recipient of this inaugural APS Division of Particles and Fields award with David Nygren. It is very gratifying that novel, often speculative radiation instrumentation development—with an impact on science beyond what could be foreseen—is being recognized by this new award,” Radeka said in his speech.

Unsung game changer

The world of physics is not deprived of committed individuals who devote their entire lives for the advancement of the segment. Among whom is Dr Ruggero Maria Santilli, chief scientist at tech innovator Thunder Energies Corporation ( OTCQB: TNRG ). He has dedicated his life to discovering ways of disproving early theories that antimatters are difficult to prove, if not totally nonexistent at all.

His over 50 years work on the subject led to the discovery and development of the Santilli Telescope , the first and only optical instrument for space exploration that could detect antimatter particles, galaxies, cosmic rays, and asteroids. 

But the now-living legend Santilli seems not interested in what he could gain from this outstanding feat. Today, he is focused on making the antimatter-detecting telescope available to all lovers of astronomy—be it professional or amateur—across the globe, as he is one of those who believe that contributing to the advancements in the segment is not only exclusive to the members of the academe and the professional world but also to the humble backyard astronomers.

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