"Small is different." That's how theoretical physicist Uzi Landman likes to describe his research interests. Recipient of the 2000 Feynman Prize in Nanotechnology, Landman has been a pioneer in the quest to discover how materials behave on the nanoscale.
Nanotechnology allows scientists to manipulate individual atoms and molecules, making it possible to build machines smaller than human cells. It's a field that holds much promise for treating disease and building smaller electronic devices, among other things. But it also poses great challenges, the biggest being size. Objects this small don't always behave the way the standard laws of physics predict. So scientists such as Landman are trying to find new laws to predict the behavior of objects in the nanoworld.
Among Landman's research interests are artificial atoms, known as quantum dots, which can be used to store massive amounts of information in a compact space. Other areas include nanowires, nanojets, and nanotribology, the study of friction at the nanoscale.
Landman is a Regents' and Institute Professor. He holds the Callaway Chair in Physics and serves as the director of the Georgia Tech Center for Computational Materials Science. His honors include the Beams Award for Excellence in Research from the American Physical Society in 1999 and the 2002 Materials Research Society Medal.