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Michael Pepper

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Sir Michael Pepper
Born (1942-08-10) 10 August 1942 (age 78)
Alma materUniversity of Reading
Cambridge University
Known forOne dimensional electron transport, Quantum Hall effect[1]
AwardsHughes Medal (1987)
Royal Medal (2005)
Mott Medal (2000)
FREng[2] (2009)
IET Faraday Medal (2013)
IOP Newton Medal (2019)
Scientific career
InstitutionsUniversity College London
University of Cambridge
Toshiba Research Europe Ltd
GEC Hirst Research Centre
Doctoral studentsAlexander R. Hamilton
Other notable studentsMichelle Simmons
InfluencesNevill Mott
Philip Anderson

Sir Michael Pepper, FRS, FREng[3] (born 10 August 1942) is a British physicist notable for his work in semiconductor nanostructures.

Early life

Pepper was born on 10 August 1942 to Morris and Ruby Pepper. He was educated at St Marylebone Grammar School, a grammar school in the City of Westminster, London that has since closed. He then went on to study physics at the University of Reading and graduated Bachelor of Science (BSc) in 1963. He remained at Reading to undertake postgraduate studies and completed his Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree in 1967.[4]

In 1987, while an academic of the University of Cambridge, he was granted the status of Master of Arts (MA Cantab). He was awarded a higher doctorate, Doctor of Science (ScD), by Cambridge.[4]


Sir Michael was a physicist at the Plessey Research Laboratories when he formed a collaboration with Sir Nevill Mott, (Nobel Laureate, 1977) which resulted in his commencing research in the Cavendish Laboratory in 1973 on localisation in semiconductor structures. He subsequently joined the GEC Hirst Research Centre where he set up joint Cambridge-GEC projects. He was one of three authors on the paper that eventually brought a Nobel prize for the quantum Hall effect to Klaus von Klitzing. Sir Michael formed the Semiconductor Physics research group[5] at the Cavendish Laboratory in 1984, and following a period as Royal Society Warren Research Fellow was appointed to his current role, Professorship of Physics, at the Cavendish Laboratory in 1987. In 1991, he was appointed managing director of the newly established Toshiba Cambridge Research Centre, now known as the Cambridge Research Laboratory (CRL) of Toshiba Research Europe.[6] The following year, 2001, he was appointed Scientific Director of TeraView, a company formed by spinning off the terahertz research arm of CRL. He became an honorary Professor of Pharmaceutical Science in the University of Otago, New Zealand in 2003.[7] He left his Cambridge Chair to take up the Pender Chair of Nanoelectronics at University College London in 2009[8][permanent dead link] and has been associated with many developments in Semiconductor Physics and applications of terahertz radiation. He sits on the Scientific Advisory Committee of Australia's ARC Centre of Excellence in Future Low-Energy Electronics Technologies.[9]


He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1983[10] and was elected a Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge, in 1982. In 1987 he received the Hughes Medal. Previously he had received the Europhysics Prize of the European Physical Society, and the Guthrie Prize of the Institute of Physics both in 1985. The Institute of Physics awarded Sir Michael the first Mott Prize[11] in 2000. He had previously given the first Mott Lecture in 1985. He was awarded the Royal Medal in 2005 for his "work which has had the highest level of influence in condensed matter physics and has resulted in the creation of the modern field of semiconductor nanostructures,"[12] gave the Royal Society's Bakerian Prize Lecture in 2004 and received a knighthood in the 2006 New Year's Honours list for services to physics.[13] He was appointed a fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering.[3] In 2010 he won the Swan Medal and Prize. He has been awarded the 2013 Faraday Medal of the IET. In 2019 he was awarded the Institute of Physics Isaac Newton Medal.[14]

Research interests

Media appearances

See also


  1. ^ http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/print/734
  2. ^ "List of Fellows".
  3. ^ a b "List of Fellows". Royal Academy of Engineering. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
  4. ^ a b "PEPPER, Sir Michael". Who's Who 2014. A & C Black. December 2013. Retrieved 10 August 2014.
  5. ^ "Semiconductor Physics Group". University of Cambridge. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
  6. ^ "Cambridge Research Laboratory". Toshiba. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
  7. ^ University of Otago, School of Pharmacy, Annual Report 2003/2004. Retrieved 2 July 2006
  8. ^ https://www.london-nano.com/content/newsevents/recentnews/2009/sirmichaelpepper/. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  9. ^ "Sir Michael biography". Centre for Future Low-Energy Electronics Technologies. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  10. ^ Royal Society website. Retrieved 4 July 2006
  11. ^ "Mott medal recipients". Institute of Physics. Retrieved 26 December 2019.
  12. ^ Royal Society website: Royal Medal. Retrieved 6 May 2006
  13. ^ Toshiba Research Europe: news article about Pepper's knighthood Archived 12 June 2006 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 6 May 2006
  14. ^ "2019 Institute of Physics Awards — Department of Physics". University of Cambridge. 10 July 2019.
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