So Hirata

Above: So Hirata has won the 2008 Annual Medal of the International Academy of Quantum Molecular Science.

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UF Professor Wins International Award for Pioneering Research in Quantum Chemistry

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences professor So Hirata has been selected to receive the 2008 Annual Medal of the International Academy of Quantum Molecular Science. The academy awarded Hirata in recognition of his “theory and algorithm developments in electron correlated methods for molecules and extended systems."

A faculty member in the Departments of Chemistry and Physics, Hirata is also a member of the Quantum Theory Project and the Center for Macromolecular Science and Engineering. His research focuses on the development of new many-body theories describing concerted motions of electrons in atoms and molecules in the gas and condensed phases and in crystalline solids.

Hirata received a Ph.D. in theoretical chemistry from the Graduate University for Advanced Studies in 1998. He has held positions with the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, the University of California, Berkeley, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Hiroshima University. In 2008, Hirata was awarded the Hewlett-Packard Outstanding Junior Faculty Award by Hewlett-Packard and the American Chemical Society’s Division of Computers in Chemistry.

The International Academy of Quantum Molecular Science is an international learned society founded in 1967 in Menton, France, and consists of 129 members who are renowned leaders of the broad field of quantum chemistry including 10 Nobel Laureates. The Annual Medal is awarded to a scientist of any nationality under 40 years of age who has distinguished himself or herself for a pioneering contribution to the field.

The award ceremony will take place in the 13th International Congress of Quantum
Chemistry held in Helsinki, Finland, in June, 2009.

For more information, visit the Academy website at



Jeff Stevens

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