Prize Recipient

Recipient Picture

Robert J. Soulen
Naval Research Laboratory


"For developing low temperature noise thermometry to achieve an absolute thermometer which now defines the year 2000 International Temperature Scale between 1 mK and 1 K to an accuracy of 0.1%, and for other significant contributions to thermome-try measurement over a distinguished career."


Robert J. Soulen, Jr. graduated with a B.A. in Physics from Rutgers University (1962) and completed a Ph.D. in Physics in 1966 from the same University.

Thereafter, he joined the National Bureau of Standards (NBS), where he held positions as a staff scientist as well as several management positions. While employed at NBS he was awarded the Condon Prize for outstanding scientific writing (1976), and a Department of Commerce Gold medal (1979) for co-developing superconductive fixed point devices.

In 1987 he joined the staff at the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL), where he was a staff scientist as well as a manager. He was awarded the Berman Publication Award for scientific writing (1998), as well as the Keithley Award (2001).

Dr. Soulen is a Fellow of the American Physical Society, has been President of the Instrument & Measurement Topical Group, is Associate Editor for Cryogenics Magazine and for the Journal of Superconductivity, has served on the Board of the Applied Superconductivity Conference, has twice been the US Representative for Thermometry to the BIPM.

He has written approximately 170 scientific articles, including two for Physics Today. His research topics involve superconductivity and thermometry. He is presently engaged in:

(1). the use of a point contact between a superconductor and a ferromagnetic metal (Andreev reflection) to measure the spin polarization of the latter. Any geometry is possible: You make it, we can measure it.

(2). development of an explanation for enhanced superconductivity near a metal-insulator transition which applies equally well to high and low Tc superconductivity. Result: A very successful prediction for the phase diagram for the phenomenon of superconductivity.

Selection Committee:

Marvin Cage (Chair), James R. Matey, James E. Faller, Bruce Brandt