Scientists Moungi Bawendi, Louis Brus, and Alexei Ekimov have been awarded the 2023 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for their groundbreaking work on quantum dots. These tiny particles, pivotal in nanotechnology, light up our computer and TV screens and assist doctors in tumour visualization.
As the Nobel Committee for Chemistry highlighted, the trio’s work has paved the way for advancements in flexible electronics, miniature sensors, efficient solar cells, and secure quantum communication. Due to their minuscule size, these quantum dots exhibit properties governed by quantum phenomena, leading to numerous applications, including in LED lights and aiding surgical procedures to remove cancer tissues.
A Brief on the Laureates and Nobel’s Legacy
The announcement of this esteemed prize by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences comes with a cash award of 11 million Swedish crowns ($997,959). A brief profile of the laureates reveals Moungi Bawendi’s association with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Louis Brus’s longstanding stint at AT&T Bell Labs, and Alexei Ekimov’s role as the chief scientist at Nanocrystals Technology Inc. Each of these scientists has made significant contributions to the field of nanocrystals.
Established by Swedish dynamite inventor and chemist Alfred Nobel, the Nobel Prizes have celebrated exceptional contributions to science, literature, and peace since 1901. The legacy of the chemistry award is rich, with laureates including eminent figures like Ernest Rutherford and Marie Curie.