JILA Fellow Margaret Murnane was awarded the Science Foundation Ireland’s (SFI) prestigious St. Patrick’s Day Science Medal on 14 March 2018 in Washington D.C., for her significant contribution to academia, research and industry.
Murnane’s many achievements include designing some of the fastest lasers in the world and creating table-top affordable X-ray lasers. Applications of both works advance the wider research community.
The SFI St. Patrick’s Day Science medal is awarded annually to distinguished Irish scientists, engineers, or technology leaders living and working in the US.
Murnane was born and raised in County Limerick, Ireland, before moving to the US to complete her PhD in physics at the University of California at Berkeley. She continues to play a significant role in research and the promotion of science in Ireland, in her keen and ongoing support of the Tyndall National Institute of Cork.
From the SFI website: On accepting her SFI St. Patrick’s Day Science Medal, Prof Murnane said: “My passion and love for physics first came from my father who was a teacher, and this grew when I attended University College Cork and completed my Bachelors there. Today I am proud to say that the education I started in Ireland and continue to develop in the US has allowed me to follow my interests and create technology and systems which can be used across different areas of research in both countries today. In my work with the Tyndall Institute, I have seen first-hand the fantastic research taking place in Ireland which has applications around the world. As an Irish citizen living in America, it heartens me to see the continued collaboration between the two countries to ensure the research community in both Ireland and the US can produce the very best work. Today, I am very honoured to receive the SFI St. Patrick’s Day Science Medal.”
The award was presented by Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to both Murnane and David McCourt, Founder and CEO of Granahan McCourt Capital. Read more about the award on the SFI website.