March 5, 2009
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) physicist Sergey Mirov, Ph.D., has won the 2009 Carolyn P. and Charles W. Ireland Prize for Scholarly Distinction.
UAB presents the award annually to a full-time faculty member in the schools of Arts and Humanities, Natural Sciences and Mathematics or Social and Behavioral Sciences for their professional and academic achievements and contributions to the university and local community. The prize, made possible by the Caroline P. and Charles W. Ireland Endowment for Scholarly Distinction, comes with a $5,000 cash award.
Mirov has gained worldwide recognition for his groundbreaking research and invention in the fields of laser physics, laser spectroscopy and solid state physics. He is the co-director of the UAB Center for Optical Sensors and Spectroscopies.
With the support of the UAB Research Foundation (UABRF), Mirov has secured a range of patents for his laser technologies and founded his start-up company Photonics Innovations in 2007. The company's revolutionary tunable laser technology, dubbed the Optical Nose, carries the promise of impacting the medical, environmental, scientific and counter-terrorism fields. The Optical Nose's ability to distinguish particular molecular compounds, for example, could give battlefield soldiers the ability to detect explosive devices from a safe distance or help doctors diagnose life-threatening diseases long before symptoms could be diagnosed by today's traditional methods.
Mirov also was recognized for his work inside the classroom. In nominating Mirov for the Ireland Prize, David Shealy, Ph.D, chairman of the UAB Department of Physics, said Mirov's excellence in teaching has been demonstrated, in part, by his direction and mentorship of 21 undergraduate research projects and a dozen more graduate and post doctoral research associates during his 15-year UAB career.
For more on Sergey Mirov visit www.phy.uab.edu/%7Emirov/index.htm.