Professor David Thouless

Professor David Thouless

Professor David Thouless was a student at St Faith’s from 1942-47 and ever since leaving the School, has achieved endless success every where he has gone.

After leaving here, David went on to study at Westminster College, followed by Trinity Hall in Cambridge where he gained his Bachelor of Arts. He then crossed over to America where he gained a PhD from Cornell University.

After finishing his studies David became a professor to many of the top institutes in the world, including Berkeley, Yale and the University of Washington. During this time David contributed in ground-breaking research and study into an array of topics such as the theory of many-body problems, the concept of ‘rearrangement energy’ within atomic nuclei, ‘topological ordering’ in Statistical mechanics and offered important findings relating to localised electron state in disordered lattices.

However, David Thouless’ most recent work, and possibly greatest achievement, is being awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics. David, along with two other Cambridge graduates Duncan Haldane and Michael Kosterlitz, have been awarded this incredible accolade for their work on exotic states of matter, which could possibly pave the way for quantum computers and other revolutionary technologies.

Steve Bramwell, a physicist at UCL said, “The breakthroughs of these three scientists allowed massive progress to be made in understanding and calculating the properties of many material systems. In my own case it opened up 25 years of research into magnetic thin films – which is what computer hard drives store information on. Many other scientists across many disciplines owe an equal debt to the theoretical insights of Thouless, Kosterlitz and Haldane.”

This is a huge achievement for David and his colleagues but also for the wider scientific community. Many congratulations and we hope this is the foundation of even greater work.

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