Air Force Funding Furthered Nobel Prize Winners’ Research

The 2010 Nobel Prize winners in physics received Air Force funding to mature the research that earned them the prize. Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov, both from the University of Manchester, will be honored in December in Stockholm, Sweden, for successfully isolating and measuring the properties of a single atomic sheet of graphite, called graphene, in 2004. Graphene is stronger than steel, yet flexible and stretchable. Later in 2008, the Air Force Office of Scientific Research’s European Office of Aerospace Research and Development in London funded the two scientists’ activities in areas like improving graphene’s electrical quality. “Graphene is an amazing material, and it has wide-ranging promise for Air Force applications in areas such as low power and microelectronics, terahertz sources and sensors, and flexible compact displays,” said Lt. Col. Scott Dudley, AFOSR’s physics program manager. (AFOSR report by Maria Callier)