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Gregory Fiete Named a Simons Fellow in Theoretical Physics

Gregory Fiete Named a Simons Fellow in Theoretical Physics
Gregory Fiete has been named a Simons Fellow in Theoretical Physics. Photo by Alex Wang.

Gregory Fiete, associate professor of physics at The University of Texas at Austin, has been named one of this year's 12 Simons Fellows in Theoretical Physics by the Simons Foundation. The fellowship program provides researchers a full year of academic leave, enabling recipients to focus solely on research for the long periods often necessary for significant advances.

Fiete studies the coordinated motions and quantum mechanics of electrons in solid materials—an area known as "condensed matter physics."

In his professional biography he writes, "The questions that drive my research are: 'What is possible in nature,' 'How do we realize those possibilities in practice,' and 'How do we know we have realized them in a real experiment?' The goal of my research is simple: To find patterns in nature that no one has noticed before."

Fiete co-leads a research group called Materials Driven by Light, which explores a rapidly emerging area of study that uses illumination to control the structure of a material and its properties, with potential applications in a broad range of technologies for communications and information processing. The group is one of two in The UT Austin Center for Dynamics and Control of Materials, a center formed in 2017 with a $15.6 million grant from the National Science Foundation.

Fiete has received numerous research awards, including a National Science Foundation CAREER Award and a Department of Defense Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers. In 2016, he was named a fellow of the American Physical Society. Fiete is also an accomplished educator, having won the College of Natural Sciences Teaching Excellence Award.

The Simons Foundation was founded by Jim and Marilyn Simons in 1994 to advance the frontiers of research in mathematics and the basic sciences.

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Friday, 21 September 2018

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