Monday, February 28, 2011

Happy Birthday, Steven Chu!

Happy birthday, Steven Chu!

Today is the U.S. Secretary of Energy's 63rd birthday. Here are some fun facts about President Obama's go-to Energy guru:

- Chu won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1997, sharing it with two other physicists, Claude Cohen-Tannoudji and William D. Phillips. The trio won for their creation of a method to cool and trap atoms using laser light.

- Before becoming Energy Secretary, Chu was the director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, working on alternative energy and renewable energy technologies. He was also a professor of physics at the University of California.

- As a teenager, Chu taught himself how to pole vault using bamboo poles he got from a local carpet store.

- He's the first person to be appointed to the Cabinet after having won a Nobel Prize. Others have gone on from working as Cabinet members to win Nobel Prizes, but Chu was the first to win the award before working as a presidential adviser.

- Chu is an advocate for alternative energy and nuclear power and also for moving away from fossil fuel dependency.

Happy birthday, Dr. Chu!

[President Obama with his Cabinet in 2009. Steven Chu is second from left in the middle row. White House photo.]

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