Centenary Prize 2016 Winner

Professor R. J. Dwayne Miller
Professor R J Dwayne Miller
The Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter and the University of Toronto


Awarded for his contributions to the development of femtosecond electron diffraction to realise the first atomic movies of chemical reactions and for his service to making science inspiring to the general public



About the Winner

R J Dwayne Miller has published over 200 research articles, one book, and several reviews. He has pioneered the development of both coherent multidimensional spectroscopy methods, associated ultrafast laser technology, and introduced the concept of using ultrabright electron sources to probe structural dynamics.  The electron sources developed by his group are sufficiently bright to literally light up atomic motions in real time. He and his group were the first to capture atomic motions during the defining moments of chemistry to directly observe the very essence of chemistry. This work accomplished one of the dream experiments in science.  It brought the chemists’ collective gedanken experiment to direct observation - the first molecular movies.

His research accomplishments have been recognized with an A P Sloan Fellowship, Camille and Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award, Guggenheim Fellowship, Presidential Young Investigator Award (USA), Polanyi Award, Rutherford Medal in Chemistry, the Chemical Institute of Canada (CIC) Medal, and numerous named lectureships.  He was inducted as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, Fellow of the CIC, Fellow of the Optical Society of America, and distinguished University Professor at the University of Toronto.  He recently received the E. Bright Wilson Award in Spectroscopy, conferred by the American Chemical Society (2015).  He is also a strong advocate for science promotion earning the McNeil Medal from the Royal Society of Canada (2011) for founding Science Rendezvous.  Science Rendezvous is one of the largest celebration of science (geographically at least) with over 300 events all across Canada. It now has new initiatives in the North, aimed to make science accessible to the general public with over 200,000 attendees annually, made possible by 5000 volunteers/researchers.

Related Links

Link icon Professor Miller's Webpage
The Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter

Link icon Professor Miller's Webpage
University of Toronto

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