Two POPSCI Brilliant 10 Scientists Nab 2005 MacArthur "Genius" Awards

Michael Manga and Claire Gmachl were awarded $500,000 each and bring the Brilliant 10-alum MacArthur-recipient total to four

by Antonin Kratcochvil

Antonin Kratcochvil

Congratulations are in order for two alums of POPSCIs Brilliant 10-geophysicist Michael Manga (Brilliant 10 class of 2003) of the University of California at Berkeley and laser physicist Claire Gmachl (Brilliant 10 class of 2004) of Princeton University-each of whom was awarded a $500,000 MacArthur "genius" grant on September 20. The awards recognize individuals who, as stipulated by the MacArthur Foundation, "show exceptional merit and promise for continued and enhanced creative work." POPULAR SCIENCE is turning out to be uncannily predictive of who will win this coveted honor: In 2004 both Massachusetts Institute of Technology materials scientist Angela Belcher (Brilliant 10 class of 2002) and MIT computational theorist Erik Demaine (Brilliant 10 class of 2003) won a MacArthur.

Read our profiles of each of the four winners:

And meet this year's current crop, the PopSci Brilliant 10 Class of 2005: