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The work of two Nobel Laureates, participating in ICTP's First Stig Lundqvist Research Conference on the Advancing Frontiers in Condensed Matter Physics, held 26-29 July, represent some of the best examples of physics' ability to reshape today's technology. Klaus von Klitzing, Acting Director at the Max Planck Institute for Solid State Research in Stuttgart, Germany, received the Nobel Prize in 1985 for his discovery of the behaviour of electrons under strong magnetic fields. His finding, which solved the quantized Hall effect, allows more precise measurement of electrical resistance and more accurate testing of theories about electronic movements in solids. Horst L. Stoermer won the Nobel Prize in 1998 for his discovery of the so-called fractional quantum Hall effect, a phenomenon in which electrons subject to extremely powerful magnetic fields and low temperatures form new particles carrying charges that are fractions of electron charges. These particles, which condense into a kind of quantum fluid, have provided profound insights into the inner structure of matter. That knowledge, in turn, has proven instrumental in increasing our understanding of the behaviour of superconducting materials. The conference was named in honour of Stig Lundqvist, the noted Swedish physicist who headed the Centre's Scientific Council from 1983 to 1992.

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