Distinguished Prof. Mordechai Segev Recipient of the 2019 EMET Prize
Distinguished Prof. Mordechai (Moti) Segev of the Faculty of Physics at Technion is the recipient of the 2019 EMET Prize in the field of Physics and Space. The EMET Prize is awarded under the auspices of the Prime Minister of the State of Israel.
Dist. Prof. Segev, 60, is the Robert Shillman Chair of the Faculty of Physics, and a founder of the Helen Diller Center for Quantum Science, Matter and Engineering at Technion. He was born in Romania and immigrated to Israel aged three. He grew up in Haifa before serving in the IDF as an infantry officer and later as a reserve commander of a reconnaissance unit for many years. After his army service, Segev completed his bachelor’s and direct-track doctoral degree at Technion in the Viterbi Faculty of Electrical Engineering. Following a post-doctorate at the California Institute of Technology, he was appointed assistant professor at Princeton University in 1994, went up the ranks to associate professor and full professor within 4.5 years. In 1998 he returned to Israel and to Technion as a faculty member. In 2009, he was made a Technion distinguished professor.
Prof. Segev is a trailblazing physicist in the field of optics and lasers and his work is cited in tens of thousands of scientific publications. Among his honors are the prestigious Quantum Electronics Prize of the European Physics Society (2007), the Max Born Award of the American Optical Society (2009), the Arthur L. Schawlow Prize in Laser Science of the American Physical Society (2014), and the Israel Prize in Physics (2014). He is a foreign member of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) of the USA and a member of the Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities.
His group focuses on experimental and theoretical research projects in numerous fields including photonics, lasers and quantum electronics. The group is engaged in basic research that influences other areas of science beyond photonics, and in the development of applications that impact the world of technology.
This past year (March 2018-Feb 2019), Segev published articles on seven groundbreaking research breakthroughs in the world’s leading scientific journals, Nature and Science.
Beyond his personal achievements, Segev is most proud of the success of his doctoral and postdoctoral students, 21 of whom are university professors in Israel and abroad, and many others who hold senior R&D positions in industry. His candidacy for this year’s EMET Prize was submitted by his former students, who are now university professors in Israel.
The EMET Prize is awarded annually by the A.M.N. Foundation for the Advancement of Science, Art and Culture in Israel, “for excellence in academic and professional achievements that have far-reaching influence on and significant contribution to society.” The Foundation was created in 1999 by Alberto Moscona Nisim in order “to acknowledge those who view excellence as a way of life and the fulfillment of human potential as essential to creating a better world for future generations.” This year’s prize committee included Prof. Hagit Messer-Yaron, Prof. Jacob Klein and Prof. Nir Shaviv.