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Very rubin observatory, Credit: Rubin Obs/NSF/AURA

Two Perimeter faculty win Early Researcher Awards

account_circle By Scott Johnston
William East and Beni Yoshida have been awarded Early Researcher Awards from the Government of Ontario.

Two Perimeter faculty members, William East and Beni Yoshida, have been awarded Early Researcher Awards (ERAs) from the Ontario Ministry of Colleges and Universities. Both early-career scientists will receive $140,000 over five years to support their research programs.

“Public funding for fundamental research is absolutely vital for driving innovation in Ontario,” says Perimeter Institute Director Robert Myers. “We are grateful to the Ministry of Colleges and Universities for their visionary support of exceptional young scientists through the Early Researcher Awards program.”

The aim of the ERA program is to “attract and retain the best and brightest talent” by enabling researchers like East and Yoshida to train students, build a team, and jumpstart their research.

East is an expert in gravitational wave astronomy. This is a relatively new way of probing the universe by measuring the ripples in spacetime caused by the collisions of black holes. Combining gravitational wave data with optical and radio astronomy has the potential to reveal new insights into fundamental physics. But to get there, robust theoretical models need to be developed, and East and his team are tackling this challenge.

Yoshida, meanwhile, is applying his expertise in quantum computing to a longstanding physics puzzle: how to make Einstein’s theory of gravity compatible with quantum mechanics. Some progress has been made in idealized models (like the anti-de Sitter/conformal field theory correspondence, better known as AdS/CFT), but Yoshida hopes to expand into more complex models that approximate the real universe. His approach, which uses techniques in quantum error correction, also promises to make advances in practical technologies like quantum computing and quantum cryptography.  

“East and Yoshida are both pushing the boundary of what is known and what is possible,” says Myers. “These two world-leading researchers are a true asset to their students and the broader Perimeter community, and I am very pleased to see them recognized and their research supported by the province."

About PI

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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