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CITA Professor J. Richard Bond receives three prestigious honours from the international physics community

 In October, 2023 CITA’s Professor J. Richard Bond received two prestigious honours from the Canadian and American physics communities.

The Canadian Association of Physicists has named Bond a CAP Fellow “in recognition of his broad, stellar research contributions in the field of cosmology and astrophysics”. The CAP Fellows Program recognizes CAP members who have made significant contributions in physics research, in physics teaching, in the advancement of technology, or in service to the CAP. Professor Bond is receiving this distinction, only second to last year’s recipients Canadian Nobel Laureates Arthur B. McDonald and Donna Strickland. Dr. Bond is also recognised for his extensive contribution “to the Canadian physics community by playing an important role in major Canadian and international experimental and theoretical consortia. Some of those are the Planck satellite, the Atacama Cosmology Telescope, Director of CITA, Director of CIFAR cosmology and gravity program, etc”.

Independently, the American Physical Society has awarded Bond the 2024 Hans A. Bethe Prize “for developing conceptual and quantitative tools that have enabled cosmologists to measure the geometry, content and age of the universe.” The Hans A. Bethe Prize is presented annually to recognize outstanding work in theory, experiment or observation in the areas of astrophysics, nuclear physics, nuclear astrophysics, or closely related fields.

CITA Director, Professor Juna Kollmeier shared “I am delighted to see CITAzens recognized for their contributions to astrophysics. For decades, Professor Bond has thought very deeply about the cosmos and the meaning of the Universe’s fantastic imperfections. The field is grateful to him for his role in developing the framework for understanding these fluctuations and for bringing theory and observation together. Bond is developing new techniques as he enters a new season of his career and we hope he follows in Hans Bethe’s footsteps with another fruitful and enduring season ahead.”

To the question, what these prestigious awards mean to him personally, Dr. Bond said: “I was pleased to see the FCAP award recognized, not just my research, but the role I’ve played through CITA and CIFAR in helping Canada become a powerhouse in theoretical astrophysics in institutions all across Canada,” says Bond. “I am honoured to be in only the second cohort receiving this distinction.”
“The Hans-Bethe Prize is of great importance to me, because of Bethe’s singular role in nuclear astrophysics and my encounters with him over the years. In fact, my obsession with entropy as a way to understand all cosmic evolution – from the early universe to the development of our interconnected cosmic web to life – largely began because of his clarity about the role of entropy in Supernovae core collapse, which I built on, and am still building on. In 1979, I talked on “entropy, neutrinos and supernovae” at the first Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics program, where Bethe, old then, was at the core of all that was going on. And he paid attention to what this young researcher was saying.”

Earlier this year Professor Dick Bond was also elected a Foreign Fellow of the Indian National Science Academy (INSA), effective January 1, 2024.

Bond was cited by INSA for his pioneering work in the field of cosmology, specifically for demonstrating that slight variations in the cosmic microwave background radiation contain precious information regarding the shape, size, age and composition of the Universe.

Dr. Bond’s many distinctions also include the 1998 CAPCRM Prize in Theoretical and Mathematical Physics, the 2010 CAP Medal of Lifetime Achievement, the Killam Prize, and the NSERC Herzberg Gold Medal.

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