Van Horn Lecture Series

Each year, the Department of Materials Science and Engineering brings a world-renowned materials expert to campus to serve as the Van Horn Lecturer, delivering three public lectures and meeting with the department community over the course of several days each spring.

The Kent R. van Horn Lecturship is an endowed lectureship that dates from 1974. It honors alumnus Kent R. van Horn, who had a distinguished career as a metallurgist, director of research, and ultimately the corporate vice president of Alcoa. 

Each year, department faculty members assess the state of the art in materials science around the world, and nominate individuals who have been pivotal in advancing the field both over his or her career and, in particular, in recent years. 

Watch past Van Horn Lectures:

Harry A. Atwater, April 17-19, 2018

Lecture 1: Fueling Human Progress with Sunlight


Lecture 2: Tunable Light-Matter Interactions in Two-Dimensional Materials and Metasurfaces


Lecture 3: Trip the Light Fantastic: Photonic materials Challenges for Interstellar Travel

Christopher Schuh, March 28-31, 2017

Lecture 1: Harder, Cheaper, Greener: The Materials of Nanostructured Metal Coatings


Lecture 2: Materials Entrepreneurship: Nanostructured Metal Coatings as a "Platform Technology"


Lecture 3: Materials Scale-Up Science: How Thermodynamics Enables Mass Manufacturing

Wayne Kaplan, March 22-24, 2016

Lecture 1: Wetting of Interfaces


Lecture 2: Thermodynamics of Interfaces


Lecture 3: Boundary Mobility

Harry Bhadeshia, March 31-April 2, 2015

Lecture 1: Extremely Complex Problems


Lecture 2: The Evolution of Solutions


Lecture 3: First Bulk Nanostructured Metal

Previous Lecturers

2014: Tresa Pollock

2013: Eduard Arzt

2012: Michael Finnis

2011: Yet-Ming Chiang

2010: A. Lindsay Greer 

2009: Angela Belcher

2008: Subra Suresh

2006: Sheldon Wiederhorn

2005: Peter W. Voorhees

2004: Terence E. Mitchell

2003: Sumino Iijima

2002: David Embury

2001: William J. Boettinger

2000: Herbert Gleiter

1999: David Clarke 

1998: Peter Hazzledine

1997: Robert O. Ritchie

1996: Manfred Rühle

1995: William D. Kingery

1994: L. Michael Brown

1993: Peter Hirsch

1992: Robert W. Balluffi

1991: William D. Nix

1990: S. Amelinckx

1989: James Rice

1988: Mats Hillert

1986: Peter Haasen

1985: Michael F. Ashby

1984: Martin E. Glicksman

1983: Anthony G. Evans

1982: John P. Hirth

1981: David Turnbull

1980: Robert D. Pehlke

1979: John W. Cahn

1978: Ray E. Smallman

1977: Robert T. Wei

1975: Raymond F. Decker

1974: Joseph E. Burke