The 2016 Nobel Prize in Physics has been awarded to three British scientists for "theoretical discoveries of topological phase transitions and topological phases of matter."
The award was announced Tuesday by the Royal Academy of Sciences in Stockholm to David J. Thouless, F. Duncan M. Haldane and J. Michael Kosterlitz.
One half of the prize has been awarded to David Thouless, with Duncan Haldane and Michael Kosterlitz sharing the other half.
According to the committee, Thouless has been given a larger share because he made crucial contributions to both the advances (phase transitions and phases of matter) cited in the prize, reports the Guardian.
Topology explains why electrical conductivity inside thin layers changes in integer steps.
Kosterlitz and Thouless studied the electrical behaviour of surfaces or inside extremely thin layers (physicists call these two-dimensional materials).
Haldane studied matter that forms threads so thin they can be considered one-dimensional.
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