The Nobel Prize gala award ceremony began Saturday evening in Stockholm, during which Israeli scientist Dan Shechtman will be awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry.
Shechtman – a 70-year-old expert in materials science at Haifa’s Technion-Israel Institute of Technology – discovered in 1982 that atoms in rigid crystals can be packed together in unusual ways. This breakthrough led to the development of extremely strong materials from metal surgical tools and razor blades to diesel engines and as protective coatings and metal alloys. In addition, what have become known as quasiperiodic or quasicrystals, do not rust or become oxidized and have almost no surface friction.
Judy Siegel-Itzkovich contributed to this report.