Physics Nobel Prize poll: Quantum experiments and particle discoveries are the top picks

Oct 02, 2012
List of topics and their respective percentages of the vote.

For the past month the Joint Quantum Institute (JQI) has sponsored a website allowing visitors to vote for the topic they believe will capture this year's Nobel Prize for physics. The site offered 14 Nobel-worthy topics and some representative names to go with each topic. A total of 350 votes were cast in the JQI poll, and the results are enumerated below.

It is of course difficult to predict winners. Citations, excellence of research, lifetime efforts (although not officially a qualification), theory-vs-experimental, the nature of the past few Nobel awards, and the difficulty for large collaborative efforts (finding a new quark, for instance) in choosing no more than three deserving awardees are all factors taken into account by the Swedish Academy. In the end we'll only know for sure who won on October 9.

The top vote getter in the poll was the topic of quantum information, including work on such things as (qubits), the processing of quantum information, and the teleportation of quantum states. Tied for second place were the discovery of elementary particles—-such as the top and and, more recently, the apparent discovery of the —-and demonstration (in the 1970s and 1980s) of . The fourth place finisher was the subject of slowed and stopped light.

Explore further: New filter could advance terahertz data transmission

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

The age of quantum information

Sep 15, 2011

Today’s computers, which are based on classical mechanics, process information coded in long streams of 1s and 0s.

Quantum physics is the focus of Nobel buzz

Oct 04, 2011

Three physicists whose research on entangled particles plays a key role in attempts to develop super-fast quantum computers could be in the running for the 2011 Nobel Prize in physics on Tuesday.

Recommended for you

New filter could advance terahertz data transmission

Feb 27, 2015

University of Utah engineers have discovered a new approach for designing filters capable of separating different frequencies in the terahertz spectrum, the next generation of communications bandwidth that ...

The super-resolution revolution

Feb 27, 2015

Cambridge scientists are part of a resolution revolution. Building powerful instruments that shatter the physical limits of optical microscopy, they are beginning to watch molecular processes as they happen, ...

A new X-ray microscope for nanoscale imaging

Feb 27, 2015

Delivering the capability to image nanostructures and chemical reactions down to nanometer resolution requires a new class of x-ray microscope that can perform precision microscopy experiments using ultra-bright ...

Top-precision optical atomic clock starts ticking

Feb 26, 2015

A state-of-the-art optical atomic clock, collaboratively developed by scientists from the University of Warsaw, Jagiellonian University, and Nicolaus Copernicus University, is now "ticking away" at the National ...

User comments : 2

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

forumid01
1 / 5 (1) Oct 02, 2012
I appreciate JQI's humor.
ant_oacute_nio354
1 / 5 (2) Oct 03, 2012
The mass is the electric dipole moment.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.