Gennes , Pierre Gilles de
(1932–) French physicist
Parisian-born Gennes was educated at the Ecole Normale in his native city, completing his PhD there in 1955. He was appointed professor of solid-state physics at the University of Paris in 1961; since 1971 he has served as professor of physics at the Collège de France and from 1976 as director of the College of Physics and Chemistry, Paris.
Some areas of science have long been thought to be too unstructured and messy to be conducive to traditional physical analysis. Two such areas, liquid crystals and polymers, were consequently largely ignored by physicists. Gennes, however, saw that they behave in many ways just like other better understood physical processes.
Liquid crystals consist of rodlike molecules in a liquid state. They undergo, like magnets and superconductors, phase changes. Thus in what is known as the smetic A phase, the molecules are oriented with their axes perpendicular to the layers; at lower temperatures they adopt the C phase with a parallel orientation. Using concepts derived from the study of phase changes in other fields Gennes was able to throw light on changes in liquid crystals. The results of his work were described in his The Physics of Liquid Crystals (1974). Gennes adopted a similar approach to his study of polymers which he described fully in hisScaling Concepts of Polymer Physics (1979).
For his work in these fields Gennes was awarded the 1991 Nobel Prize for physics.

Scientists. . 2011.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Gennes, Pierre-Gilles de — ▪ 2008       French physicist born Oct. 24, 1932, Paris, France died May 18, 2007, Orsay, France was awarded the 1991 Nobel Prize for Physics for his discoveries about the ordering of molecules in liquid crystals and polymers. Gennes studied at… …   Universalium

  • Gennes, Pierre Gilles de — ► (n. 1932) Físico francés. Fue premio Nobel de Física en 1991 por sus estudios sobre el cristal líquido …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Pierre-Gilles de Gennes — en 2006 Naissance 24 octobre 1932 Paris (France) Décès 18 mai 2007 (à 74 ans) …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Pierre-gilles de gennes — Pierre Gilles de Gennes en 2006 Naissance 24 octobre 1932 Paris ( …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Pierre Gilles de Gennes — Pierre Gilles de Gennes en 2006 Naissance 24 octobre 1932 Paris ( …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Pïerre Gilles de Gennes — Pierre Gilles de Gennes Pierre Gilles de Gennes Pierre Gilles de Gennes en 2006 Naissance 24 octobre 1932 Paris ( …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Pierre Gilles de Gennes — (* 24. Oktober 1932 in Paris; † 18. Mai 2007 in Orsay) war ein französischer Physiker, der 1991 den Physik Nobelpreis erhielt …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Pierre-Gilles de Gennes — (* 24. Oktober 1932 in Paris; † 18. Mai 2007 in Orsay) war ein französischer Physiker, der 1991 den Physik Nobelpreis erhielt …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Pierre-Gilles de Gennes — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Pr. Pierre Gilles de Gennes Nacimiento 24 de octubre de …   Wikipedia Español

  • Pierre-Gilles de Gennes — Pr. Pierre Gilles de Gennes Born October 24, 1932(1932 10 24) Paris, France …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”