Luis W. Alvarez (June 13, 1911, San Francisco, California – September 1, 1988) was an American physicist and inventor, who spent nearly all of his long professional career on the faculty of the University of California, Berkeley. The prestigious American Journal of Physics commented, "Luis Alvarez (1911–1988) was one of the most brilliant and productive experimental physicists of the twentieth century."
He was the author of 168 published papers in scientific journals, mostly in the field of physics, and was elected to the National Academy of Science in 1947 and the National Academy of Engineering in 1969. He was a member of the American Physical Society, a fellow in 1939, and served as President in 1969. He was awarded the Collier Trophy by the National Aeronautics Association in 1946. The trophy was presented by President Truman; and won the Presidential Medal for Merit in 1947. In 1960 he was named California Scientist of the Year; in 1961 he won the Albert Einstein Award. In 1963 he was presented the National Medal of Science by Lyndon B. Johnson; in 1965 the Michelson Award; in 1978 he received the University of Chicago Alumni Medal and was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame. In 1987, the USA Department of Energy granted him its Enrico Fermi award.
He won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1968, and received over 40 patents, some of which proved commercially viable.
|This page was a Featured Article on June 10, 2009.|