Trefil Honored for Physics Contributions

Posted: May 17, 2000 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

James Trefil, Robinson Professor of Physics, has won the 2000 Andrew Gemant Award from the American Institute of Physics. The annual award recognizes the accomplishments of a physicist who has made significant contributions to the cultural, artistic, or humanistic dimension of physics.

Trefil was chosen for his contributions to the understanding of the relationship of physics to its surrounding culture and to the communication of that understanding. The citation recognizes Trefil’s “outstanding and sustained contributions in presenting a broad range of topics in physics to millions of nonscientists around the world, through books, periodical articles, radio, and television, and for effective national leadership in developing and promoting new curricula for science education.”

The award comes with a $5,000 prize for Trefil and a grant of $3,000 to further the public communication of physics at an academic institution of Trefil’s choice. Trefil, a physicist and author of Other Worlds: The Solar System and Beyond, 1001 Things Everyone Should Know about Science, and A Scientist in the City, is widely known for his writing and his interest in teaching science to nonscientists.

The award is made possible by a bequest of Andrew Gemant to the American Institute of Physics. Past awardees include Steven Weinberg of the University of Texas at Austin and Stephen Hawking of the University of Cambridge, who received the Gemant Award for his book A Brief History of Time.

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