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Alan J. Heeger

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Title: Alan J. Heeger  
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Subject: Polymer science, Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Molecular electronics, UCSB Physics Department, Mrinal Thakur
Collection: 1936 Births, American Jews, American Nobel Laureates, American Physicists, Foreign Members of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guggenheim Fellows, Jewish American Scientists, Jewish Physicists, Living People, Members of the United States National Academy of Engineering, Members of the United States National Academy of Sciences, Molecular Electronics, Nobel Laureates in Chemistry, Organic Semiconductors, People from Sioux City, Iowa, Polymer Scientists and Engineers, University of California, Berkeley Alumni, University of California, Santa Barbara Faculty
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Alan J. Heeger

Alan J. Heeger
Born Alan Jay Heeger
(1936-01-22) January 22, 1936
Sioux City, Iowa, United States
Nationality American
Fields Physics, Chemistry
Institutions University of Pennsylvania
University of California, Santa Barbara
Alma mater University of Nebraska
University of California, Berkeley
Doctoral advisor Alan Portis
Notable awards Nobel Prize in Chemistry (2000)
Balzan Prize
ENI award
Oliver E. Buckley Condensed Matter Prize (1983)
Spouse Ruth (2 children)

Alan Jay Heeger (born January 22, 1936) is an American physicist, academic and Nobel Prize laureate in chemistry.


  • Life and career 1
  • Publication list 2
  • Autobiography 3
  • See also 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

Life and career

Heeger was born in Sioux City, Iowa, to a Jewish family. He grew up in Akron, Iowa, where his father owned a general store. At age nine, following his father's death, the family moved to Sioux City.[1]

Heeger earned a B.S. in physics and mathematics from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1957, and a Ph.D in physics from the University of California, Berkeley in 1961. From 1962 to 1982 he was on the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania. In 1982 he commenced his present appointment as a professor in the Physics Department and the Materials Department at the University of California, Santa Barbara. His research has led to the formation of numerous start-up companies including Uniax, Konarka, and Sirigen, founded in 2003 by Guillermo C. Bazan, Patrick J. Dietzen, Brent S. Gaylord. Alan Heeger was a founder of Uniax, which was acquired by DuPont.

He won the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 2000 along with Alan G. MacDiarmid and Hideki Shirakawa "for their discovery and development of conductive polymers;" They published their results on polyacetylene a conductive polymer in 1977[2][3]

He had won the Oliver E. Buckley Prize of the American Physical Society in 1983 and, in 1995, the Balzan Prize for Science of Non-Biological Materials.

His sons are the neuroscientist David Heeger and the immunologist Peter Heeger.

In October 2010, Heeger participated in the USA Science and Engineering Festival's Lunch with a Laureate program where middle and high school students engage in an informal conversation with a Nobel Prize-winning scientist over a brown-bag lunch.[4] Heeger is also a member of the USA Science and Engineering Festival's Advisory Board.[5] Heeger has been a judge of the STAGE International Script Competition three times (2006, 2007, 2010).[6]

"Perhaps the greatest pleasure of being a scientist is to have an abstract idea, then to do an experiment (more often a series of experiments is required) that demonstrates the idea was correct; that is, Nature actually behaves as conceived in the mind of the scientist. This process is the essence of creativity in science. I have been fortunate to have experienced this intense pleasure many times in my life." Alan J Heeger, Never Lose Your Nerve! [7]

Publication list

Journal Articles:

Technical Reports:


, World Scientific Publishing, ISBN 978-981-4704-85-4

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^ Never Lose Your Nerve!

External links

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