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Charles Pence Slichter

Updated: 2017-08-25T10:28Z
Charles Pence Slichter
Charles P. Slichter (Leipzig 2006).jpg
BornJanuary 21, 1924
Ithaca, NY
NationalityUnited States
InstitutionsUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Alma materHarvard University (BA magna cum laude 1945, MA 1947, PhD 1949, honorary LlD 1996)
Doctoral advisorEdward Purcell
Notable awardsNational Medal of Science (2007)
Oliver E. Buckley Condensed Matter Prize (1996)
Comstock Prize in Physics (1993)
Irving Langmuir Award (1969)

Charles Pence Slichter (born January 21, 1924) is an American physicist, best known for his work on nuclear magnetic resonance and superconductivity.

He was awarded the 2007 National Medal of Science "for establishing nuclear magnetic resonance as a powerful tool to reveal the fundamental molecular properties of liquids and solids. His inspired teaching has led generations of physicists and chemists to develop a host of modern technologies in condensed matter physics, chemistry, biology and medicine."[1]


Slichter's research has focused primarily on NMR and superconductivity. His most important work includes:[2]

  • Co-discoverer of the Hebel-Slichter effect, giving the earliest evidence for the BCS theory of superconductivity.
  • With Tom Carver, gave the first demonstration of the Overhauser Effect.
  • With Gutowsky and McCall, discovered J-coupling.

He also served as a member of the Harvard Corporation, Harvard's primary governing body, from 1970–1995;[3] as a member of the board of the National Science Foundation from 1976–1984; as a member of the President's Science Advisory Committee from 1965–1969; as a member of the President's Committee on the National Medal of Science, 1969–1974; and as a member of the President's Committee on Science and Technology Policy, 1976.[4] In 1993 Slichter was awarded the Comstock Prize in Physics from the National Academy of Sciences.[5]


Slichter is the son of economist Sumner Slichter, the grandson of mathematician Charles S. Slichter, the father of musician Jacob Slichter[6] and brother of Bell Labs executive William P. Slichter.[7]


  • Charles Pence Slichter (1963). Principles of magnetic resonance: with examples from solid state physics. Harper & Row. ISBN 9783540084761. 


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  5. ^ "Comstock Prize in Physics". National Academy of Sciences. Retrieved 13 February 2011. 
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