Laurels for a New Type of Matter

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Science  19 Oct 2001:
Vol. 294, Issue 5542, pp. 503
DOI: 10.1126/science.294.5542.503a

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Wolfgang Ketterle, Eric Cornell, and Carl Wieman have won the 2001 Nobel Prize in physics for creating the first Bose-Einstein condensates in gases of rubidium, sodium, and other alkali metals. By cooling gases to a few billionths of a degree above absolute zero and coaxing them into forming a new state of matter, the three laureates verified a prediction made by Albert Einstein 70 years earlier. Other researchers have also added new atoms to the roster of BEC-producing gases, including isotopes of hydrogen, lithium, and most recently potassium (