Sung-Sik Lee Joins Perimeter Institute as Associate Faculty Member

Lee, a theoretical condensed matter physicist, becomes the latest Associate Faculty member at Perimeter Institute, jointly appointed with McMaster University.

Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics (PI) is pleased to announce the appointment of Sung-Sik Lee as an Associate Faculty member. Lee works in the area of theoretical condensed matter physics. Since 2007, he has been an Assistant Professor at McMaster University, where he will hold his joint appointment.

In making the announcement, PI’s Director Neil Turok said, "We’re very excited to welcome Sung-Sik Lee to Perimeter. He is a brilliant young theorist who has already made significant advances connecting quantum field theory, condensed matter, and high energy physics. His depth and originality in developing novel, interdisciplinary solutions will make him a valuable addition to PI’s growing group of experts in these areas."

Lee’s research focuses on strongly interacting quantum many-body systems using quantum field theory, as well as the intersections between condensed matter and high energy physics. His recent work has included using gauge theory as a lens through which to examine the phenomenon of fractionalization, whereby microscopic particles in strongly interacting condensed matter systems effectively splinter into multiple particles at low energies.

Lee's other work includes efforts to apply the AdS/CFT correspondence from string theory to quantum chromodynamics and condensed matter, and building a non-perturbative approach to understanding unconventional metallic states of matter. He is currently working on quantum field theories for strongly interacting metals. He is also seeking an explanation for the origin of space and gravity by applying the principle of emergence.

On joining PI’s faculty, Lee said, “I’m thrilled to be joining such an innovative and lively research environment. Perimeter recognizes the importance of ideas that cut across conventional disciplinary boundaries, a notion that underpins much of my research. The Institute is also quickly amassing a first-rate group of condensed matter researchers that I’m excited to work with.”

Lee grew up in South Korea and completed his Masters in nonlinear dynamics and his PhD in theoretical condensed matter physics, both at the Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH), finishing his PhD in 2000. He then worked as a postdoctoral researcher at POSTECH, MIT, and the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics (Santa Barbara) before joining McMaster in 2007.  

Further Exploration

  • Low energy effective theory of Fermi surface coupled with U(1) gauge field in 2+1 dimensions, Sung-Sik Lee,
  • A Non-Fermi Liquid from a Charged Black Hole; A Critical Fermi Ball, Sung-Sik Lee, arXiv:1104.5704
  • Holographic Matter: Deconfined String at Criticality, Sung-Sik Lee, arXiv:1101.5487

About Perimeter Institute

Perimeter Institute is the world’s largest research hub devoted to theoretical physics. The independent Institute was founded in 1999 to foster breakthroughs in the fundamental understanding of our universe, from the smallest particles to the entire cosmos. Research at Perimeter is motivated by the understanding that fundamental science advances human knowledge and catalyzes innovation, and that today’s theoretical physics is tomorrow’s technology. Located in the Region of Waterloo, the not-for-profit Institute is a unique public-private endeavour, including the Governments of Ontario and Canada, that enables cutting-edge research, trains the next generation of scientific pioneers, and shares the power of physics through award-winning educational outreach and public engagement.

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