The Advanced Photon Source
a U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science User Facility

APSUO Arthur H. Compton Award

About the Compton Award


The Arthur H. Compton award was established in 1995 by the APS Users Organization (APSUO) to recognize an important scientific or technical accomplishment at the Advanced Photon Source. The award consists of a plaque and $2500.

The awards are generally made at APS User Meetings, which are held every spring. A call for nominations is sent out before the meeting, and the winner(s) is invited to give an award lecture at the meeting. Awards are not necessarily made each year.

Compton was an American physicist who won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1927 for discovering and explaining changes in x-ray wavelengths resulting from x-ray collisions with electrons, the so-called Compton effect. This important discovery in 1922 confirmed the dual nature (wave and particle) of electromagnetic radiation. A Ph.D. from Princeton University, Compton held many prominent positions, including professor of physics at The University of Chicago and chairman of the committee of the National Academy of Sciences that studied the military potential of atomic energy. His position on that committee made Compton instrumental in initiating the Manhattan Project, which created the first atomic bomb.

 Recent Winner

2015 APS Compton Award to Ice, Larson, and Sparks

The Advanced Photon Source (APS) Users Organization has announced that the 2015 APS Arthur H. Compton Award has been awarded to Gene E. Ice, Bennett C. Larson, and Cullie J. Sparks (posthumously), all of Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

The Compton Award recognizes an important scientific or technical accomplishment at, or beneficial to, the APS. This year’s award is given for seminal developments advancing spatially and temporally resolved synchrotron x-ray capabilities.

The selection committee reviewed several excellent nominations. The nominating and support statements for Ice, Larson, and Sparks made clear the importance of their work: “This nomination recognizes breakthroughs that have had transformative impacts on focusing monochromators, on submicron [three-dimensional] spatial resolution x-ray microscopy, and on high-time-resolution scientific investigations at the Advanced Photon Source and synchrotrons worldwide.”

The award was presented at the APS Plenary Session, Monday, May 11, 2015, during the 2015 APS/CNM Users Meeting.

Past Winners



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