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2 Japanese and 1 American share Nobel Prize in physics

23 Comments

Two Japanese researchers and a Tokyo-born U.S. scientist have won the Nobel Prize in physics for discoveries in the world of subatomic physics, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences announced Tuesday.

American Yoichiro Nambu, 87, of the University of Chicago, won half of the prize for the discovery of a mechanism called spontaneous broken symmetry in subatomic physics. Makoto Kobayashi and Toshihide Maskawa of Japan shared the other half of the prize for discovering the origin of the broken symmetry that predicts the existence of at least three families of quarks in nature.

"Spontaneous broken symmetry conceals nature's order under an apparently jumbled surface," the academy said in its citation. "Nambu's theories permeate the standard model of elementary particle physics. The model unifies the smallest building blocks of all matter and three of nature's four forces in one single theory."

The Japanese-born Nambu moved to the United States in 1952 and is a professor at the University of Chicago, where he has worked for 40 years. He became a U.S. citizen in 1970.

"As early as 1960, Yoichiro Nambu formulated his mathematical description of spontaneous broken symmetry in elementary particle physics," the citation said.

"Spontaneous broken symmetry conceals nature's order under an apparently jumbled surface. It has proved to be extremely useful, and Nambu's theories permeate the Standard Model of elementary particle physics."

Kobayashi and Maskawa "explained broken symmetry within the framework of the standard model but required that the model be extended to three families of quarks."

Kobayashi, 64, works for the High Energy Accelerator Research Organization, or KEK, in Tsukuba, Japan. Maskawa, 68, is with the Yukawa Institute for Theoretical Physics at Kyoto University in Japan.

"The spontaneous broken symmetries that Nambu studied, differ from the broken symmetries described by Makoto Kobayashi and Toshihide Maskawa," the academy said. "These spontaneous occurrences seem to have existed in nature since the very beginning of the universe and came as a complete surprise when they first appeared in particle experiments in 1964."

The academy added that it was only in recent years that scientists have been able to confirm the explanations that Kobayashi and Maskawa proffered in 1972.

"These predicted, hypothetical new quarks have recently appeared in physics experiments. As late as 2001, the two particle detectors BaBar at Stanford ... and Belle at Tsukuba, Japan, both detected broken symmetries independently of each other. The results were exactly as Kobayashi and Maskawa had predicted almost three decades earlier," the citation said.

The trio will share the 10 million kronor ($1.4 million) purse, a diploma and an invitation to the prize ceremonies in Stockholm on Dec. 10.


On the Net:

http://nobelprize.org

© Wire reports

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

23 Comments
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Just saw it on TV... 3 Japanese Scientists get Nobel Prize in Physics. The announcer later said that one ofthem now has American Citizenship--- doesnt that mean that he is no longer Japanese! Thanks JT for getting it right!

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I know this is good news, but does it really justify taking up half the airtime on the NHK evening news?

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Albert Einstein once made a famous remark about how he would be regarded by his fellow Germans, depending on whether on no Relativity was proved true or not. So by the same token I suppose if professor Nambu had been a stockbroker instead of a scientist, Japanese right now would definitely be calling him "that American."

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Beelzebub: I posted something like that, but use the word 'criminal' instead of stockbroker. I can't see the post anymore.

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"I know this is good news, but does it really justify taking up half the airtime on the NHK evening news?"

No, because Japan is a successful country and winning Nobel Prizes should not be such a big deal, but the Japanese establishment is more obsessed with those things than Gollum was with his ring.

Pukey2, if you were somewhat annoyed by the NHK coverage tonight, do yourself a favor and avoid ALL Japanese media outlets for the rest of October. This is only the beginning of an all-consuming, orgiastic, masturbatory Nobel Prize mediathon in Japan.

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I know this is good news, but does it really justify taking up half the >airtime on the NHK evening news?

You obviously no nothing about national pride, especially that of the Japanese.

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Boy howdy, this sure sounds cool. Anybody know where I could read a laymans description of this process or discovery so a dummy like me could unnnerstand it?

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I know this is good news, but does it really justify taking up half the airtime on the NHK evening news?

Because NHK has nothing to report from "Forbes" magazine.

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I'm so happy about this discovery. I've wondered for years why my right big toe is bigger than my left. Ahhhh so; spontaneous disruption of symmetri!

Kudos to Japan!

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Congratulations to Japan.And if anyone can destroy Japanese suicide culture to stop Japanese killing themselves,that person deserves to win a Nobel prize too.

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haha the news I watched didn't say anything about the guy actually being American.

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haha the news I watched didn't say anything about the guy actually being American.

Heaven forbid!

"It's mine, mine, all mine!!

Societal insecurity at its finest.

S

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haha the news I watched didn't say anything about the guy actually being American.

I don't know, everyone is so busy in Japan, maybe they didn't have enough time to mention it. I'm sure they wouldn't intentionally omit details to cast themselves in a better light, would they? I've heard the Japanese are an honest people and have some kind of honour code.

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Don't bother with the news agencies in this country.. everything is so lopsided. This morning there was some press conference about that Judo guy who won the gold at the olympics and he wants to do K-1 now or something. His press conference was that he was "still thinking about the future"

what a friggin joke.

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One point that should be mentioned is that Nambu completed the work for which he was awarded the prize in the 1960s, but only became in American citizen in 1970. H therefore earned the prize as a Japanese, though will receive it as an American. So perhaps the U.S. media outlets claiming that the prize was won by an American are the ones at fault.

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oh no....now we gonna see those guys in the news for the next two years:(

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So perhaps the U.S. media outlets claiming that the prize was won by an American are the ones at fault.

How is that possible? When did he win the prize? And his citizenship is...?

Banzai! Let's overlook that detail and cerebrate three, count em, one, two, three! local boys that have won the Nobel Prize for...something! Don't discuss what they won it for in much depth, let's talk about, well how great 127 million people are in this small island! Everybody is trying so hard. But how's the inefficiency. This guy takes 30 years for his research to be recognised. It's about time a Nobel Prize was inaugurated for inefficiency. That way, the Japanese could win it every year! Banzai!

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Congratulation to three professors for their discovery. Today is a proud moment for the descendants of the Sun Goddess. I thin she may smile on the heaven.

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Why these Nobel prizes at the same time?

It is almost as if the Nobel committee are bundling Japanese people together, when perhaps had then not been descendents of the Sun Goddess, they might have deserved two Nobel prizes (one for Nambu one for Kobayashi and Masakawa).

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I wonder if Prof. Nambu could have done his research in Japan at that time (50s). Were there university facilities in Japan capable of hosting his research? In any case, congratulations to the three for their hard work and the Nobel.

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Actually it is a big deal. Japan very rarely wins Nobel prizes for science. Google it and find out.

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My favorite part of this very short article might be the fact that one quote was repeated only two paragraphs later, and with different capitalization, too.

“Spontaneous broken symmetry conceals nature’s order under an apparently jumbled surface. It has proved to be extremely useful, and Nambu’s theories permeate the Standard Model of elementary particle physics.”

Too bad the second quote didn't clarify things any further than the first time I read it!

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My favorite part of this very short article might be the fact that one quote was repeated only two paragraphs later, and with different capitalization, too.

keshii well done, I think you're the first person to read a JT article in its entirety before posting! You win the JT prize! It's not a Nobel prize though and is kind of worthless, but then so is time spent here.

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