Two Nobel Laureates to lecture in city

Bill Phillips
Bill Phillips
Dunedin residents will have a rare chance to hear public lectures from two Nobel Prize winners on consecutive days this week.

University of Otago officials said the university had achieved a ''rare coup'' in having two American Nobel Laureates, Prof Roald Hoffman, of Cornell University, and Prof Bill Phillips, of the US National Institute of Standards and Technology, in Maryland, give lectures in the same week.

Prof Hoffman won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1981 for his application of chemical bonding theories, sharing the prize with Japanese chemist Kenichi Fukui.

His lecture, titled ''All the ways to have a bond'', will be given at College of Education Tower Block, in Union St East, on Wednesday. Prof Phillips won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1997, with two colleagues, for work developing laser-cooling to slow gaseous atoms, enabling the coldest matter in the universe to be made.

 Roald Hoffman
Roald Hoffman
Prof Phillips will present, ''Time, Einstein and the coolest stuff in the universe'' in the St David Lecture Theatre on Thursday.

Organisers said Prof Hoffman's talk would particularly interest chemistry teachers, higher level secondary school pupils and people with some science background who were ''interested in the way matter holds together''.

Prof Phillips was a ''larger-than-life character'', whose talk would feature ''lots of demonstrations, lots of interaction'', organisers said.

- john.gibb@odt.co.nz