News for all computer users . . . Yesterday the 2007 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded jointly to two researchers for their work in the field of nanotechnology: Albert Fert of France and Peter Gruenberg of Germany.
This year’s physics prize is awarded for the technology that is used to read data on hard disks. It is thanks to this technology that it has been possible to miniaturize hard disks so radically in recent years. Sensitive read-out heads are needed to be able to read data from the compact hard disks used in laptops and some music players, for instance.
Details of the work completed by Fert and Gruenberg are included in the Aademy’s Scientific Background report titled “The Discovery of Giant Magnetoresistance.”
A note for K-12 educators: The official Web site of the Academy contains several online games and simulations to help students understand the work of Nobel Laureates in, and build their knowledge of, all the Nobel categories: physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature, peace and economics.