Queen's University

'A great honour'

Queen’s University Professor Emeritus Art McDonald officially received the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics Thursday at a ceremony in Stockholm, Sweden.

Dr. McDonald was named co-recipient of the Nobel in October for his research at the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory (SNO), which determined neutrinos, one of the fundamental particles that make up the universe, are capable of changing their type – an indicator that they have mass.

“Dr. McDonald’s research on neutrinos has revolutionized the world of particle physics and our understanding of the innermost workings of matter,” says Daniel Woolf, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of Queen’s University. “I offer my heartfelt congratulations to him on this tremendous achievement.”

Dr. McDonald has already received a number of awards and recognition for his research at SNO, including the Killam Prize in the Natural Sciences, and the European Physics Society HEP Division Giuseppe and Vanna Cocconi Prize for Particle Astrophysics. In 2006, he was made and Officer of the Order of Canada.

“It is a great honour to receive this prize,” says Dr. McDonald. “It is wonderful to share it with many of my SNO colleagues and their partners here in Stockholm and with hundreds more who contributed so much to our success, at Queen’s and our other Canadian and international institutions.”

Earlier this week, Dr. McDonald delivered his Nobel Lecture – a customary public lecture on a subject related to the topic of their prize. Dr. McDonald’s lecture, titled “The Sudbury Neutrino Observatory: Observation of Flavour Change for Solar Neutrinos,” discussed the measurements he and his SNO colleagues used to show neutrinos from the sun changed their “flavour” or type - implying that neutrinos have a non-zero mass.

“Dr. McDonald has made a remarkable contribution to our understanding of matter, and has done so through innovative and pioneering experiments at SNOLAB,” says Dr. Steven Liss, Vice-Principal (Research) at Queen’s University. “He is a shining example of the excellence in research at Queen’s, leadership and the importance of collaboration. We are very proud to share in this incredible achievement. It doesn’t get any better than this.”

During the ceremony, the Nobel Laureates received the Nobel Medal, Nobel Diploma and a document confirming the Nobel Prize amount from King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden.  

Original story from the Queen's Gazette. (Photo by Pi Frisk, Nobel Media)

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Queen's professor emeritus wins Nobel Prize

Queen's University professor emeritus Arthur McDonald is the co-winner of the 2015 Nobel Prize in physics.

The announcement, made Tuesday morning by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences in Stockholm, said Dr. McDonald won the award, along with Takaaki Kajita of the University of Tokyo, "for their key contributions to the experiments which demonstrated that neutrinos change identities."

Dr. Arthur McDonald

I am an astrophysicist and the director of the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory Institute.  I hold the Gordon and Patricia Gray Chair in Particle Astrophysics at Queen's University.