This medal is awarded for important discoveries in the field of thermal or optical properties of matter and their applications.
Benjamin Thompson FRS
The Rumford Medal is awarded biennially (in even years) for "an outstandingly important recent discovery in the field of thermal or optical properties of matter and their applications, made by a scientist working in Europe , noting that Rumford was concerned to see recognised discoveries that tended to promote the good of mankind".
The award was established following a donation by Benjamin Thompson FRS (PDF), known as Count Rumford. The first award was made in 1800.
If possible the Committee will award the medal to an early-to-mid career stage scientist. The award must be made to a scientist working in Europe.
The recipient is chosen by the Council of the Royal Society on the recommendation of the Physical Sciences Awards Committees. Nominations are valid for five years after which the candidate cannot be re-nominated until a year after the nomination has expired. The medal is of silver gilt and is accompanied by a gift of £1,000.
The next call for nominations for this award will open in 2015.
Most recent medallist
Professor Roy Taylor was awarded the Rumford Medal in 2012 for his outstanding contributions to tunable ultrafast lasers and nonlinear fibre optics, including fibre Raman, soliton and supercontinuum laser sources, which translated fundamental discoveries to practical technology.