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For release: April 28, 2008

Doug Finnemore, Condensed Matter Physics, 515-294-3455
Bruce Harmon, Condensed Matter Physics, 515-294-5772
Breehan Gerleman Lucchesi, Public Affairs, 515-294-9750


Three Ames Lab physicists in inaugural group of honorees

AMES, Iowa— Three scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Ames Laboratory have been recognized for their exceptional efforts in assessing manuscripts for American Physical Society journals.  Doug Finnemore, senior physicist, Bruce Harmon, deputy Lab director and senior physicist, and a third physicist who requested to remain anonymous are in the inaugural group of Outstanding Referee award winners.

APS initiated the Outstanding Referee award this year to express appreciation to all referees whose efforts in peer review both maintain the high standards of APS journals and help authors improve the quality and readability of their articles.

The selection of Outstanding Referees for 2008 started with a review of two decades of records listing over 50,000 referees who have reviewed manuscripts for APS journals.  From there, APS editors narrowed the field of the inaugural class of 534 honorees based on the quality, number and timeliness of referees' manuscript reviews.

This year's Outstanding Referee award emphasizes reviewers' lifetime contributions to APS journals.  In the future, APS editors will select an additional 130 honorees each year based on reviewers' more recent work.

"Manuscript reviewers often operate in the background without much recognition, but their contributions to their fields of research are enormously important," said Alex King, Ames Laboratory director.  "We are pleased that three Ames Lab scientists have been recognized for their service."

Finnemore, who is also a retired Iowa State University Distinguished Professor of Liberal Arts and Sciences, has been an Ames Lab physicist since 1963.  Over his years at the Lab, Finnemore has served in several levels of management and won numerous awards, including two Department of Energy Awards for Sustained Research in Materials Science and selection as an APS fellow.  He has also been an editorial board member for Applied Physics Letters and Superconductor Science and Technology.  Finnemore's recent research interest is developing magnesium diboride into a high-performance superconducting material.  Harmon, who is also an Iowa State University Distinguished Professor of Liberal Arts and Sciences, started his career at Ames Lab in 1973 as a postdoctoral fellow and has risen to the rank of deputy director.  Harmon has also led the Lab's Condensed Matter Physics research program since 1983.  He has published over 250 journal articles and given over 120 invited talks, and is an APS fellow.  Harmon's research interests include first principles calculations for studying magnetism, electronic structure, lattice dynamics, superconductivity, and optics.  In particular, he is interested in magnetic molecules and spin Hamiltonians.

Ames Laboratory is a U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science laboratory operated for the DOE by Iowa State University. The Lab conducts research into various areas of national concern, including the synthesis and study of new materials, energy resources, high-speed computer design, and environmental cleanup and restoration .