Meet Our Physicists

Gordon Baym

Gordon Baym

Gordon Baym graduated from Cornell University (A.B.) in 1956, and from Harvard University (Ph.D.) in 1960, as a student of Julian Schwinger. He then spent two years at the Institut for Teoretisk Fysik in Copenhagen (now the Niels Bohr Institute). After a year at Berkeley, he joined the faculty of the University of Illinois, where he is presently a Research Professor of Physics, Center for Advanced Study Professor Emeritus, and Fisher Distinguished Professor of Engineering Emeritus. He has been a regular participant in the Aspen Center for Physics since 1967.

Baym’s interests in physics range from quantum statistical mechanics to matter at low temperatures and under extreme conditions. A pioneer in the study of pulsars and neutron stars, he has been a driver in laboratory studies of density matter via ultrarelativistic heavy ion collisions. His ongoing interests include quark matter, primordial neutrinos and the intersection of low temperature and high energy physics. 

Baym is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; and a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and of the American Philosophical Society. He is a recipient of the American Physical Society Hans Bethe Prize and Lars Onsager Prize, the Eugene Feenberg Memorial Medal, and the 2021 American Physical Society Medal for Exceptional Achievement in Research. His continuing service to the physics community lately includes chairing the National Academy of Sciences study of the Electron-Ion Collider.

Gordon Baym

Positions Held

General Member, 2014 – current


APS Medal for Exceptional Achievement in Research, 2021

Related Content

Oppenheimer and Los Alamos: Beyond the Movie

By Gordon Baym

I imagine that a good number of you have seen the movie, Oppenheimer, which focusses on the remarkable character of J. Robert Oppenheimer, and especially on the confrontations at the 1954 Atomic Energy Commission hearings