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Friday, July 11, 2014

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Callan wins Dirac Medal

Princeton Professor of Physics Curtis Callan has been named a winner of the 2004 Dirac Medal for his fundamental contributions to particle physics and string theory.

The Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Trieste, Italy, awarded the Dirac Medal to Callan and James Bjorken, professor of physics at Stanford University, for theoretical investigations they conducted in the 1960s and 1970s regarding a phenomenon called "deep inelastic scattering." Their work was instrumental in turning experimental results on high-energy collisions between electrons and protons into an explanation of the nature of the strong interactions (the force that holds nuclei together).

Callan was also cited for more recent theoretical contributions to the field of string theory, which attempts to provide a unified theory of all particles and forces in nature.

The Dirac Medal is awarded annually to honor "significant contributions to theoretical physics and mathematics," according to the citation from the Abdus Salam center. The center established the award in 1985 in honor of the English physicist Paul Dirac. Medalists receive a $5,000 prize and present a lecture in Trieste.

Contact: Lauren Robinson-Brown (609) 258-3601

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