Canadian Association of Physicists ASSOCIATION CANADIENNE DES



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"I am honoured to have been awarded the 2001 Herzberg Medal. I have always enjoyed physics, but in most recent years it has become even more fun and exciting, thanks to my collaborators in Canada and abroad, postdocts and students whom I wish to acknowledge."

Dr. Michel J.P. GingrasOttawa, April 25th, 2001 - The Canadian Association of Physicists (CAP) is pleased to announce that the 2001 CAP Herzberg Medal for outstanding achievement by a physicist under the age of 40 will be awarded to Dr. Michel J.P. Gingras of the University of Waterloo, for his theoretical work on the role of random disorder in condensed matter physics.

Michel Gingras has performed several key computer simulation studies of important statistical mechanics models aimed at describing complex randomly disordered condensed matter systems. These studies have been recognized internationally by researchers in his field as providing very significant improvements of the fundamental understanding of the effects of random disorder (e.g. impurities) in systems such as superconductors and magnetic systems. One of Gingras' key strengths is his ability to interact fruitfully with experimentalists, providing theoretical guidance and constantly suggesting new directions to experimental projects.

Michel Gingras' distinctive research style is well illustrated by his his involvement within the muon spin resonance (mSR) group operating at TRIUMF. There, preliminary mSR results on the spin-freezing in the disorder-free frustrated Y2Mo2)7 antigerromagnet led him to investigate using analytical and numerical techniques, the general problem of "disorder-free glassiness" in a number of systems using various analytical and numerical techniques. To complement his theoretical studies, he actively involved himself in the experimental mSR program at TRIUMF, carrying some of the experiments. He also lead experimental work to investigate the critical phenomena and the universality class of the spin-freezing in frustrated antiferromagnets, as well as suggesting the chemical synthesis of specific materials aimed at verifying his and others' theoretical predictions.

Dr. Gingras received his B.Sc. (Honours) from Laval in 1983, an M.Sc. (Physics) from Laval in 1985, and his Ph.D. from the University of British Columbia in 1990, for which he received the Governor General's Gold medal for most outstanding Ph.D. student graduating from that institution in 1990/91. He was an NSERC Postdoctoral Fellow in 1990 and spent two years at the Laboratoire de Physique Statistique of the Ecole Normale Supérieure, and at the Laboratoire de Magnétisme des Solides at the Université Pierre et Marie Curie, both in Paris. He was a research associate in the Theory Group at TRIUMF from 1992 to 1996. He joined the Department of Physics at the University of Waterloo in 1996.

In 1997, Dr. Gingras received a Research Innovation Award from Research Corporation. In 1999 he was the only Canadian awarded a Cottrell Scholar Award, also from Research Corporation. In 1999, he was awarded a Premier Research Excellence Award from the Province of Ontario in recognition of his work on the effects of random disorder in superconducting and magnetic systems. He joined the Superconductivity Program of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research in 1999. In 2000, he was one of the four initial recipients of the University of Waterloo Award for Excellence in Research.

The CAP Herzberg Medal was first introduced in 1970 and is awarded annually. The 2001 Medal will be presented to Dr. Gingras during the CAP's awards banquet to be held at the University of Victoria on 2001 June 19th.

The Canadian Association of Physicists, founded in 1945, is a professional association representing over 1600 individual physicists and physics students in Canada, the U.S. and overseas, as well as a number of Corporate and Departmental Members. In addition to its learned activities, the CAP also undertakes a number of activities intended to encourage students to pursue a career in physics.

For more information, please contact:

Canadian Association of Physicists
Tel: (613) 562-5614
Fax: (613) 562-5615

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