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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

David Jonathan Gross (/ɡrs/; born February 19, 1941) is an American theoretical physicist and string theorist. Along with Frank Wilczek and David Politzer, he was awarded the 2004 Nobel Prize in Physics[1] for their discovery of asymptotic freedom. Gross is the Chancellor's Chair Professor of Theoretical Physics at the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics of the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB), and was formerly the KITP director and holder of their Frederick W. Gluck Chair in Theoretical Physics.[2] He is also a faculty member in the UCSB Physics Department[3] and is currently affiliated with the Institute for Quantum Studies[4] at Chapman University in California. He is a foreign member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.[5]


Gross was born to a Jewish family in Washington, D.C., in February 1941. His parents were Nora (Faine) and Bertram Myron Gross (1912–1997). Gross received his bachelor's degree and master's degree from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel, in 1962. He received his Ph.D. in physics from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1966, under the supervision of Geoffrey Chew.[6]

He was a Junior Fellow at Harvard University, and a Eugene Higgins Professor of Physics at Princeton University until 1997, when he began serving as Princeton's Thomas Jones Professor of Mathematical Physics Emeritus.[7] He has received many honors, including a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship in 1987, the Dirac Medal in 1988 and the Harvey Prize in 2000.[6]

He has been a central figure in particle physics and string theory. In 1973, Professor Gross, working with his first graduate student, Frank Wilczek, at Princeton University, discovered asymptotic freedom—the primary feature of non-Abelian gauge theories—led Gross and Wilczek to the formulation of quantum chromodynamics, the theory of the strong nuclear force. Asymptotic freedom is a phenomenon where the nuclear force weakens at short distances, which explains why experiments at very high energy can be understood as if nuclear particles are made of non-interacting quarks. The flip side of asymptotic freedom is that the force between quarks grows stronger as one tries to separate them. Therefore, the closer quarks are to each other, the less the strong interaction (or color charge) is between them; when quarks are in extreme proximity, the nuclear force between them is so weak that they behave almost as free particles. This is the reason why the nucleus of an atom can never be broken into its quark constituents.

QCD completed the Standard Model, which details the three basic forces of particle physics—the electromagnetic force, the weak force, and the strong force. Gross was awarded the 2004 Nobel Prize in Physics, with Politzer and Wilczek, for this discovery.

Gross, with Jeffrey A. Harvey, Emil Martinec, and Ryan Rohm also formulated the theory of the heterotic string. The four were whimsically nicknamed the "Princeton String Quartet."[8] He continues to do research in this field at the KITP.

In 2003, Gross was one of 22 Nobel Laureates who signed the Humanist Manifesto,[9][10][11] however Gross is not an atheist.[10][11]

Gross is one of the 20 American recipients of the Nobel Prize in Physics to sign a letter addressed to President George W. Bush in May 2008, urging him to "reverse the damage done to basic science research in the Fiscal Year 2008 Omnibus Appropriations Bill" by requesting additional emergency funding for the Department of Energy’s Office of Science, the National Science Foundation, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology.[12]

In 2015, Gross signed the Mainau Declaration 2015 on Climate Change on the final day of the 65th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting. The declaration was signed by a total of 76 Nobel Laureates and handed to then-President of the French Republic, François Hollande, as part of the successful COP21 climate summit in Paris.[13]


Gross' first wife was Shulamith (Toaff), and they had two children. He also has a stepdaughter by his second wife, Jacquelyn Savani.[14] He has three brothers, including Samuel R. Gross, professor of law, and Theodore (Teddy) Gross, a playwright.

Honors and awards

Membership in Academies and Societies

Honorary Doctorates and Professorships

  • Doctor Philosophiae Honoris Causa, University of Montpellier, 2000
  • Doctor Philosophiae Honoris Causa, Hebrew University, Jerusalem, 2001
  • Doctor Philosophiae Honoris Causa, Sao Paulo University, Brazil, 2006
  • Doctor Philosophiae Honoris Causa, Ohio State University, 2007
  • Doctor Philosophiae Honoris Causa, University of the Philippines, Manila, 2008
  • Doctor Philosophiae Honoris Causa, De La Salle University, Manila, 2008
  • Doctor Philosophiae Honoris Causa, University of Cambridge, England, 2008
  • Doctor Philosophiae Honoris Causa, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, 2008
  • Doctor Philosophiae Honoris Causa, University of Cambodia, 2010
  • Doctor Philosophiae Honoris Causa, Université Libre de Bruxelles, 2010
  • Einstein Professor, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 2005
  • Honorary Professor, Zhejiang University, 2005
  • Honorary Professor, Xieman University, 2006
  • Honorary Professor, Xian University, 2006
  • Honorary Professor, ESPOL University, Ecuador, 2006
  • Honorary Professor, Langzhou University, 2007
  • Honorary Professor, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China, 2010
  • Honorary Professor, Xian Jiao Tong University, China, 2012
  • Honorary Professor, Huaqiao University, Xiamen, China, 2012
  • Honorary Director, Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics/CAS, Beijing, China, 2006-
  • Solvay Centenary Chair, Solvay Institute, Brussels, 2011
  • Lee Kong Chian Distinguished Professor, Institute for Advanced Study, Singapore, 2013
  • Lorentz Professor, Leiden University, Netherlands, 2014
  • Honorary Doctoral Degree, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, 2016
  • Doctor Philosophiae Honoris Causa, Universidad Nacional de Tucumán, Argentina, 2016

Selected publications

Journal articles

  • Gross, David; Wilczek, Frank (1973). "Ultraviolet Behavior of Non-Abelian Gauge Theories". Physical Review Letters. 30 (26): 1343–1346. Bibcode:1973PhRvL..30.1343G. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.30.1343.
  • D. J. Gross and F. Wilczek, “Asymptotically Free Gauge Theories. I”, Phys. Rev. D8 3633 (1973)

Technical reports


  1. ^ a b "The Nobel Prize in Physics 2004". Retrieved 2021-01-20.
  2. ^ "In Depth: David Gross | The Kavli Foundation". Retrieved 2021-01-12.
  3. ^ "People | Department of Physics - UC Santa Barbara". Retrieved 2021-01-20.
  4. ^ "Members". Retrieved 2021-01-20.
  5. ^ a b "Foreign Members---Academic Divisions of the Chinese Academy of Sciences". Retrieved 2016-02-09.
  6. ^ a b "Autobiography". Retrieved 23 Apr 2013.
  7. ^ "David Gross | Department of Physics". Retrieved 2021-01-12.
  8. ^ String Theory, at 20, Explains It All (or Not). NY Times (2004-12-07)
  9. ^ "Notable Signers". Humanism and Its Aspirations. American Humanist Association. Retrieved October 2, 2012.
  10. ^ a b Krauss, Lawrence Maxwell. Hiding in the Mirror: The Quest for Alternate Realities, from Plato to String Theory (by Way of Alice in Wonderland, Einstein, and the Twilight Zone). New York: Penguin, 2006. Print.
  11. ^ a b "He also said that he is a humanist".
  12. ^ "A Letter from America's Physics Nobel Laureates" (PDF).
  13. ^ "Mainau Declaration". Retrieved 2018-01-11.
  14. ^
  15. ^ "J. J. Sakurai Prize for Theoretical Particle Physics". Retrieved 2021-01-22.
  16. ^ "David Gross". Retrieved 2021-01-22.
  17. ^ "ICTP - The Medallists". Retrieved 2021-01-22.
  18. ^ "Golden Plate Awardees of the American Academy of Achievement". American Academy of Achievement.
  19. ^ "Welcome to The University of Cambodia (UC)". Retrieved 2021-01-22.
  20. ^ "Awards - UMD Physics". Retrieved 2021-01-22.
  21. ^ "NICA First stone laying ceremony". Joint Institute for Nuclear Research. Retrieved 2021-01-22.
  22. ^ "International kudos". EurekAlert!. Retrieved 2021-01-22.
  23. ^ "APS Fellow Archive".
  24. ^
  25. ^
  26. ^ "Historic Fellows | American Association for the Advancement of Science". Retrieved 2021-01-23.
  27. ^ "European Academy of Sciences - Honorary Members". Retrieved 2021-01-23.
  28. ^ Gross, David (2005). "Honorary Fellow". Tata Institute of Fundamental Research.
  29. ^ "APS Member History". Retrieved 2021-01-23.
  30. ^ David, Gross (2007). "New Fellows, Indian Science Academy" (PDF).
  31. ^ "Gross, David". TWAS. Retrieved 2021-01-22.
  32. ^ "Membres - AIPS-AISR-PIIST". (in French). Retrieved 2021-01-23.
  33. ^ "2019 APS President David Gross". Retrieved 2021-01-22.

External links

This page was last edited on 23 January 2021, at 01:58
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