Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Director Charles V. Shank announced this week his intention to leave his position by the end of the year. Shank, who joined Berkeley Lab and the University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley) faculty in September 1989, will return to the Berkeley campus as a tenured professor in physics, chemistry and electrical engineering/computer science. A nationally recognized scientist and research leader, Shanks previously had a 20-year career at AT&T Bell Labs and was director of the Electronics Research Laboratory at UC Berkeley. At Bell Labs, he made pioneering contributions to the study of ultrafast events that occur in a millionth of a billionth of a second using short laser pulses. He also contributed to fiber optic communications with the co-invention of the distributed feedback laser, a component in high-data-rate transmission systems. Areas of accomplishment for the Lab under Shank’s leadership include the $85 million Molecular Foundry for which ground was broken last week; the metamorphosis of the SuperNova Acceleration Probe into the Joint Dark Energy Mission, a Department of Energy-NASA program; and a new partnership with UC-San Francisco’s Comprehensive Cancer Center.
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