Cava Honored with APS 2021 David Adler Award

By Wendy Plump
Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020

Robert J. Cava, the Russell Wellman Moore Professor of Chemistry and a joint faculty member with the Princeton Institute for the Science and Technology of Materials (PRISM), has been awarded the American Physical Society’s 2021 David Adler Lectureship Award in the Field of Materials Physics. 

The award recognizes an outstanding contributor to the field of materials physics who is notable for his or her quality of research, review articles, and lecturing. The award is presented annually, and consists of a $5,000 honorarium and a certificate. This year, recipients of APS awards will participate in a virtual ceremony in March 2021. 

Robert J. Cava, the Russell Wellman Moore Professor of Chemistry
Robert J. Cava, the Russell Wellman Moore Professor of Chemistry and joint faculty member with the Princeton Institute for the Science and Technology of Materials (PRISM).
Photo courtesy of Duncan Hull, Wikimedia

“I am lucky to know lots of brilliant physicists whom I admire greatly, and so I’m very happy to be recognized with this award,” said Cava.

Cava was honored for enabling significant advances in the field of topological materials by recognizing, discovering and fabricating novel compounds, and demonstrating with collaborators that such materials show the expected exotic topological properties, according to a citation letter from APS President Philip H. Bucksbaum.

Cava is a solid-state chemist whose lab investigates new compounds with electronic and magnetic properties that present opportunities for scientists worldwide to expand our understanding of the often-complex physics of materials. Of special interest are non-molecular inorganic solids through which his lab can elucidate relationships between the chemistry, the crystal structure, and the physics behind their properties. 

Cava has published over 1,000 peer-reviewed papers that have been cited more than 100,000 times, giving him an H index of 143. He has been a fellow of the American Institute of Physics since 1988, a member of the National Academy of Sciences since 2001, and a Foreign Member of the Royal Society of London since 2016. He received the Humboldt Prize in 2011, and the Linus Pauling Award in 2012. He received the President’s Award for Distinguished Teaching in 2005, and a McGraw Center Graduate Mentoring Award in 2014. 

This is the second Adler Lectureship for the Department of Chemistry. Salvatore Torquato, the Lewis Bernard Professor of Natural Sciences and professor of chemistry and PRISM, won the award in 2009.

The Lectureship was endowed in 1988.