Materials Research Laboratory, University of California
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Alan Heeger obtained his Ph.D. at the University of California, Berkeley, in 1961 and was a member of the Physics department at the University of Pennsylvania from 1962-82. In 1982 he moved to the University of California at Santa Barbara to become Professor of Physics. Professor Heeger was one of the founding members of the Materials Department and currently holds a joint appointment (Physics and Materials). Professor Heeger was the co-founder (with Prof. F. Wudl) and Director of the Institute for Polymers and Organic Solids at UCSB from 1983 until 1999. Professor and his colleagues at the MRL have done pioneering research in the area of semiconducting and metallic polymers. This class of novel materials has the electrical and optical properties of semiconductors and metals in combination with the processing advantages and mechanical properties of polymers. His current research interests lie in the area of transport in semiconducting polymers and light emission from semiconducting polymers (both photoluminescence and electroluminescence). His research group focuses on issues related to the fundamental electronic structure of this novel class of materials and carries out studies of light-emitting diodes (LEDs), light-emitting electrochemical cells (LECs), and lasers, all fabricated from semiconducting (conjugated) polymers. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Nobel Prize in Chemistry (2000), the Oliver E. Buckley Prize for Condensed Matter Physics (1983), the Balzan Prize for the Science of New Materials (1995), the President’s Medal for Distinguished Achievement from the University of Pennsylvania (2001), the Chancellor’s Medal from the University of California, Santa Barbara (2001), and a number of honorary doctorates. He is a member of the National Academy of Science (USA) (2001), the National Academy of Engineering (USA) (2002), and a foreign member of the Korean Academy of Science (2001).