Moungi Bawendi
منجي الباوندي
Bawendi in 2023
Born (1961-03-15) 15 March 1961 (age 63)
EducationHarvard University (BA, MA)
University of Chicago (PhD)
Known forhot-injection synthesis of quantum dots
RelativesM. Salah Baouendi (father)
AwardsNobel Prize in Chemistry (2023)
Scientific career
Quantum chemistry
InstitutionsMassachusetts Institute of Technology
ThesisFrom the Biggest to the Smallest Polyatomic Molecules: Statistical Mechanics and Quantum Mechanics in Action (1988)
Doctoral advisorKarl Freed
Takeshi Oka
Doctoral studentsChristopher B. Murray
Cherie Kagan[1]

Moungi Bawendi (Arabic: منجي الباوندي; born 15 March 1961)[2][3] is an American–Tunisian–French chemist.[4][5] He is currently the Lester Wolfe Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.[6][7] Bawendi is known for his advances in the chemical production of high-quality quantum dots.[8] For this work, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2023.

Early life

Moungi Bawendi was born in Paris, France, the son of Tunisian mathematician Mohammed Salah Baouendi. After periods living in France and Tunisia, Bawendi and his family migrated to the United States when he was a child.[9] They lived in West Lafayette, Indiana, as Salah worked in the math department at Purdue University.[9] Bawendi graduated from West Lafayette Junior-Senior High School in 1978.[10][11]

Higher education and career

Bawendi received both an A.B. in 1982[12] and an A.M. in 1983 from Harvard University.[13] He earned a Ph.D. in chemistry in 1988 from the University of Chicago,[8] under the supervision of Karl Freed and Takeshi Oka.[14]

With Freed, Bawendi worked on theoretical polymer physics,[15] and with Oka, Bawendi worked on experiments on hot-bands of H3+, which played a role in deciphering the emission spectrum of Jupiter observed in 1989.[16]

During his graduate studies, Oka recommended Bawendi to a summer program in Bell Labs, where Louis E. Brus introduced Bawendi to the research on quantum dots.[15] Upon graduation, Bawendi went to work with Brus at Bell Labs as a postdoctoral researcher.[17]

Bawendi joined Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1990 and became professor in 1996.[17]


Bawendi was one of the most cited chemists of the decade from 2000 to 2010.[18] He is a leading figure in the research and development of quantum dots.[8] Quantum dots are tiny semiconducting crystals whose nanoscale size gives them unique optical and electronic properties.[19]

A major challenge in quantum dot research was to find ways to create high quality quantum dots that are stable and uniform. Bawendi is recognized for his work in developing standardized methods for quantum dot synthesis. In 1993, Bawendi, and his PhD students David J. Norris and Christopher B. Murray,[20] reported on a hot-injection synthesis method for producing reproducible quantum dots with well-defined size and with high optical quality. This breakthrough in chemical production methods made it possible to “tune” quantum dots according to size, and achieve predictable properties as a result. It gave scientists much greater control over the material, and made it possible to achieve precise and reproducible results.[21][22]

The method opened the door to the development of large-scale technological applications of quantum dots in a wide range of areas.[21][22] Quantum dots are now used in light-emitting diodes (LEDs), photovoltaics (solar cells),[23] photodetectors, photoconductors, lasers,[24] biomedical imaging, biosensing and other applications.[23]

Awards and honors

Bawendi was granted the Sloan Research Fellowship in 1994.[25] He won the 1997 Nobel Signature Award for Graduate Education in Chemistry of American Chemical Society (ACS).[26] In 2001, he received the Sackler Prize in Physical Chemistry of Advanced Materials.[27] In 2006, he was awarded the Ernest Orlando Lawrence Award.[28]

He was elected member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2003,[29] of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2004,[30] and of the National Academy of Sciences in 2007.[31]

In 2010 during the National Meeting on March 23, 2010, Bawendi received the ACS Award in Colloid and Surface Chemistry.[32][26] He also received the 2011 SEMI Award for North America for quantum dot research.[33]

Bawendi was selected as a Clarivate Citation Laureate in Chemistry in 2020, jointly with Christopher B. Murray and Hyeon Taeghwan, "for synthesis of nanocrystals with precise attributes for a wide range of applications in physical, biological, and medical systems."[34].

In 2023, Bawendi was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry jointly with Louis E. Brus and Alexey Ekimov "for the discovery and synthesis of quantum dots".[4].

In 2024, Bawendi was decorated with the insignia of Grand Officier of the Order of the Republic of Tunisia.[35][36] He was also awarded by the Medal of Honor of the Tunis University.[37]

Personal life

Bawendi is married to journalist Rachel Zimmerman, widow of another MIT professor, Seth J. Teller.[38]

Selected publications


  1. ^ Kagan, Cherie R (1969). The electronic and optical properties of close packed cadmium selenide quantum dot solids (PhD Thesis). Massachusetts Institute of Technology. hdl:1721.1/10603.
  2. ^ Tiss, Mohsen (October 4, 2023). "Le Tunisien Moungi G. Bawendi parmi les lauréats du prix Nobel de chimie". Tunisie.
  3. ^ "Le Tunisien Moungi Bawendi parmi le trois Prix Nobel de chimie 2023". October 4, 2023.
  4. ^ a b Devlin, Hannah; correspondent, Hannah Devlin Science (2023-10-04). "Scientists share Nobel prize in chemistry for quantum dots discovery". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2023-10-04.
  5. ^ "An overview of the main Tunisian scientists in Chemistry and Materials Science" (PDF). Retrieved October 5, 2020.
  6. ^ "Moungi Bawendi". Archived from the original on August 21, 2018. Retrieved May 1, 2017.
  7. ^ "Moungi Bawendi". Retrieved May 1, 2017.
  8. ^ a b c "The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2023". Retrieved 2023-10-04.
  9. ^ a b Baklouti, Ali; El Kacimi, Aziz; Kallel, Sadok; Mir, Nordine (2015). Analysis and Geometry: MIMS-GGTM, Tunis, Tunisia, 2014. In Honour of Mohammed Salah Baouendi. Heidelberg: Springer. ISBN 9783319174426. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  10. ^ "Distinguished West Lafayette Alumni to Return for Wall of Pride Celebration". West Lafayette Schools Education Foundation. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  11. ^ Bangert, Dave (4 October 2023). "West Lafayette grad awarded Nobel Prize in Chemistry". Retrieved 5 October 2023.
  12. ^ "University of Chicago alum shares Nobel Prize in Chemistry - CBS Chicago". CBS News. 4 October 2023.
  13. ^ Gregersen, Erik (October 6, 2023). "Moungi Bawendi | Biography, Nobel Prize, Quantum Dots, & Facts | Britannica". Retrieved 6 October 2023.
  14. ^ Bawendi, Moungi Gabriel (1988). From the Biggest to the Smallest Polyatomic Molecules: Statistical Mechanics and Quantum Mechanics in Action (PhD Dissertation). University of Chicago.
  15. ^ a b "UChicago alum Moungi Bawendi shares Nobel Prize in Chemistry for discovery of quantum dots | University of Chicago News". 2023-10-04. Retrieved 2023-10-05.
  16. ^ Oka, Takeshi (2013-10-03). "My 45 Years of Astrochemistry: Memoirs of Takeshi Oka". The Journal of Physical Chemistry A. 117 (39): 9308–9313. Bibcode:2013JPCA..117.9308O. doi:10.1021/jp4035826. ISSN 1089-5639. PMID 24490724.
  17. ^ a b "Names of purported Nobel chemistry prize winners inadvertently released". Reuters. 2023-10-04. Retrieved 2023-10-04.
  18. ^ "Most cited chemists". Thomson Reuters. Retrieved July 28, 2017.
  19. ^ Singh, Suchita; Dhawan, Aksha; Karhana, Sonali; Bhat, Madhusudan; Dinda, Amit Kumar (29 November 2020). "Quantum Dots: An Emerging Tool for Point-of-Care Testing". Micromachines. 11 (12): 1058. doi:10.3390/mi11121058. ISSN 2072-666X. PMC 7761335. PMID 33260478.
  20. ^ Robinson2023-10-11T17:50:00+01:00, Julia. "The quantum dot story". Chemistry World. Retrieved 2023-10-20.((cite web)): CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  21. ^ a b Palma, Jasmine; Wang, Austin H. (October 6, 2023). "One Small Quantum Dot, One Giant Leap for Nanoscience: Moungi Bawendi '82 Wins Nobel Prize in Chemistry | News | The Harvard Crimson". The Harvard Crimson.
  22. ^ a b Linke, Heiner (3 October 2023). "Quantum dots — seeds of nanoscience" (PDF). The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.
  23. ^ a b Cotta, Mônica A. (26 June 2020). "Quantum Dots and Their Applications: What Lies Ahead?". ACS Applied Nano Materials. 3 (6): 4920–4924. doi:10.1021/acsanm.0c01386. ISSN 2574-0970. S2CID 225779939.
  24. ^ Lerner, Eric J. (1 December 2000). "Introduction to photodetectors and applications". Laser Focus World.
  25. ^ "Fellows Database". Alfred P Sloan Foundation. Retrieved 2023-10-05.
  26. ^ a b "American Chemical Society's president comments on award of 2023 Nobel Prize in Chemistry". American Chemical Society. Retrieved 2023-10-05.
  27. ^ "Past Laureates of the Raymond and Beverly Sackler International Prize in the Physical Sciences". Tel Aviv University. 2012-09-05. Retrieved 2023-10-05.
  28. ^ "LAWRENCE Award Laureates | U.S. DOE Office of Science (SC)". 2022-06-16. Retrieved 2023-10-05.
  29. ^ "AAAS Elects Fellows in Chemistry". Chemical and Engineering News (volume 81). March 31, 2003. Retrieved 2023-10-05.
  30. ^ "Member Directory | American Academy of Arts and Sciences". Retrieved 2023-10-05.
  31. ^ "Moungi G. Bawendi". National Academy of Sciences. Retrieved 2023-10-05.
  32. ^ "Dresselhaus and Bawendi Honored by ACS" (PDF). MIT the Spectograph. 26. 2010.
  33. ^ "QD Vision receives the SEMI Award for quantum dot research". January 18, 2012.
  34. ^ Plc, Clarivate. "Clarivate Reveals 2020 Citation Laureates - Annual List of Researchers of Nobel Class". (Press release). Retrieved 2023-10-04.
  35. ^ "Kaïs Saïed décore Moungi Bawendi de l'insigne de première classe de l'Ordre national". 2011-01-17. Retrieved 2024-05-21.
  36. ^ "Moungi Bawendi, Prix Nobel Chimie, à Tunis : Une grande journée, chargée d'émotions". 2024-05-21.
  37. ^ "Bawendi à l'ENIT… sur les traces de son père, le Prix Nobel Chimie en consécration". 2011-01-22. Retrieved 2024-05-22.
  38. ^ Zimmerman, Rachel (October 14, 2023). "Our lives had been shattered. Now something extraordinary was happening". Washington Post.