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The 2004 Willis E. Lamb Award for Laser Science and Quantum Optics

Awarded January 6, 2004, at the 34th Winter Colloquium on the Physics of Quantum Electronics.

Lu Jeu Sham, University of California at San Diego

For pioneering contributions to the quantum theory of molecules and solids, especially the Kohn-Sham density functional theory.


Professor Sham is a theoretical physicist specialized in condensed matter physics. His current interest is in optical control of electron spins in semiconductor quantum dots, with the purpose of quantum information processing and of spintronics. His specialty is many-body interaction theory in solids. He contributed to the founding of the density functional theory as well as to the solution of the so-called band-gap problem. He investigated the electron-phonon effects and the many-body contribution to optical properties in semiconductors, which led to the current interest in coherent optics in semiconductor nanostructures.

Professor Sham is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and of the Academia Sinica of the Republic of China, a fellow of the American Physical Society, a member of the American Optical Society and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He has been active in service to the international and national physics community: as the chair of the Semiconductor Commission of the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics, as member of the Council and of the Executive Board of the American Physical Society and of the Executive Committee of its Division of Condensed Matter Physics.

A faculty member of the Department of Physics, University of California San Diego, he is currently Professor of Physics. He had served as Dean of Natural Sciences and chair of the department. He was given a Humboldt Foundation Award for Senior US Scientists from Germany, a Guggenheim Fellowship, Chancellor’s Associates Faculty Award for Excellence in Research, elected Faculty Lecturer by the Academic Senate, University of California, San Diego, and appointed Miller Visitor Professor at University of California, Berkeley, 1998, and C.N. Yang Visiting Professor, Chinese University of Hong Kong, 2001.

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