2018 Australian of the Year, Director Centre of ExcellenceQualification: FRS, FAA, FAAAS, FTSE, FInstP, Dist FRSN
Prof Simmons obtained a double degree in physics and chemistry (1985-1988) and then a PhD in physics, engineering II-VI solar cells from Durham University (1992). Following this she was a postdoctoral Research Fellow in GaAs-based quantum electronics at the Cavendish Laboratory in Cambridge, UK (1992-99). In 1999 she was awarded an Australian Research Council QEII Fellowship to come to Australia, where she was a founding member of the Centre of Excellence for Quantum Computer Technology. Michelle is an ARC Laureate Fellow and has been the Centre Director since 2010. She is also the founding Director of Silicon Quantum Computing Pty. Ltd, Australia’a first quantum computing company and Editor-in-Chief of npj Quantum Information, Nature’s premier journal in the emerging field of quantum information science.
Michelle has pioneered unique technologies globally to build electronic devices at the atomic scale. Her team is the only group world-wide that can create atomically precise devices in silicon – developing the first precision single atom transistor, narrowest conducting wires in silicon and most recently the demonstration of the first 2 qubit gate using phosphorus atoms in silicon. With over 400 peer reviewed publications, 21 granted patents and >180 invited/plenary talks, she is the international leader in atomic electronics.
2018: Australian of the Year
2018: Fellow of the Royal Society of London
2017: Asia Pacific Laureate in the Physical Sciences, L’Oréal-UNESCO
2017: George R. Stibitz Computing Pioneer Award, The American Computer Museum
2016: Feynman Prize, US Foresight Institute
2015: Thomas Ranken Lyle Medal, Australian Academy of Science
2015: Eureka Prize for Leadership, CSIRO
2014: Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Science
2013: Walter Burfitt Prize, Royal Society of New South Wales
2012: NSW Scientist of the Year
2011: Fellow, UK Institute of Physics
2005: Pawsey Medal, Australian Academy of Science