Torquato honored as outstanding contributor to materials physics

Salvatore Torquato, a professor of chemistry at Princeton, has been selected to receive the 2009 David Adler Lectureship Award by the American Physical Society (APS).

He is being honored for his "highly original and deep studies" of materials physics and his "outstanding communication of these results through publication and public presentation."

A researcher who is broadly interested in understanding the behavior of materials at the microscopic level, Torquato employs the techniques of statistical mechanics to study heterogeneous materials, such as composites, as well as different states of matter, such as liquids, glasses, crystals and quasicrystals. The Adler award, which consists of $5,000 and a certificate, was established to recognize an outstanding contributor to the field of materials physics who is noted for the quality of research, review articles and lecturing.

Torquato is also a faculty member at the Princeton Institute for the Science and Technology of Materials and a senior faculty fellow at the Princeton Center for Theoretical Science, an enterprise dedicated to exploring frontiers across the natural sciences. In addition, he is an associated faculty member in four departments or programs at Princeton: the Department of Physics, the Program in Applied and Computational Mathematics, the Department of Chemical Engineering and the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering.

He joined the Princeton faculty in 1992 as a professor in the School of Engineering and Applied Science. Because of his strong interests and accomplishments in statistical mechanics, he transferred to the Department of Chemistry in 2000. Before coming to Princeton, he was on the faculty of North Carolina State University.

His current work focuses on understanding how constituents of materials organize themselves, from the way particles pack in spaces and substances known as colloids self-assemble to the process by which tumors grow. His many research awards include the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics' Ralph E. Kleinman Prize and the Society of Engineering Science's William Prager Medal.

The Adler Award will be presented at the APS meeting next March in Pittsburgh.