By Tom Mead
Photo by Diana Rogers
SSRL Director Keith Hodgson
SSRL Director Keith O. Hodgson has been named a recipient
of the Department of Energy’s Ernest O. Lawrence Award for 2002. It is the
DOE’s most prestigious award.
Bestowed by the U.S. Government and presented by the
Secretary of Energy, the award recognizes exceptional and relatively
recent contributions to the development, use or control of nuclear energy
- broadly defined to include the
science and technology of particle, nuclear, atomic and molecular
SLAC Director Jonathan Dorfan called Hodgson, "an
inspiring choice - Keith epitomizes
the innovative and pioneering qualities shown by Lawrence himself."
Hodgson’s award consists of a gold medal, a citation and
$25,000. The award, together with those for this year’s six other winners,
will be presented at a ceremony to be held in late October in Washington,
"We are all enriched by the contributions these
researchers have made, ranging from understanding the genetic code to
measuring the expansion of the Universe itself," said Energy Secretary
Hodgson’s major areas of scientific impact are in
chemistry research and structural biology, for which he uses the
remarkable properties of synchrotron radiation for x-ray absorption,
diffraction and scattering.
"Keith Hodgson is an enormously gifted scientist," said
Stanford Provost John Etchemendy. "He has distinguished himself through
his own discoveries, as well as through the work of scientists whose
research he has made possible. Under his leadership, SSRL has continued to
develop as one of the leading facilities for analyzing the structure of
biologically important proteins. His work is likely to have consequences
we can only now imagine."
Hodgson’s award recognizes his seminal contributions to
chemistry for the development of new methods that use synchrotron x-rays
for investigating structure and function, especially in biological
systems. His pioneering protein crystal diffraction studies using
synchrotron radiation and his early discoveries provided the foundation
for the synchrotron revolution that followed.
His research was also among the earliest to explore and
demonstrate the great value of synchrotron radiation for multiple
wavelength anomalous dispersion phasing, or MAD phasing, which has become
a primary means of solving protein structures and which enables the
high-throughput approaches critical to studies of structural genomics. He
developed synchrotron-based, extended x-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS)
as a unique new tool for study of the electronic and metrical details of
active sites in metalloproteins.
"It is fantastic that our pioneering work in
synchrotron-based science has been recognized by such an honor," said
For more information on the award, see: