The history of prizes for
contributions to progress in Condensed Matter Nuclear Science stretches back
to at least 1993. In that year the Italian automotive group Fiat
instituted the "Truffle Prizes" and these were awarded at the first four Asti
Workshops in Piedmont. For those who are not gourmets, the truffle is an
underground fungus which grows on the roots of oak trees in certain climates
including the alpine foothills surrounding the Italian city of Asti. It
is a highly valued addition to many recipes such as the ubiquitous pasta.
Like many exotic and rare delicacies, appreciation of the truffle is an
acquired taste! This taste is not always appreciated, so in 1999 it was
proposed to replace it with a more tangible and longer lasting token of
excellence and esteem. In 2003 a series of silver medals were minted to
commemorate the late Italian physicist Giuliano Preparata who
passed away in April 2000. The cost of the Giuliano
Preparata medals was generously covered by the
Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di
In 2008 thanks
to generous donations, ISCMNS minted the Minoru Toyoda Gold Medal in 94 g of
18 carat gold.
Signora Emilia Campochiaro Preparata presented
the first Minoru Toyoda Gold Medal to Martin Fleischmann in Castel Santangelo,
Rome on October 8th 2009. Prof. Akito Takahashi has prepared this
background information on the medal.
Truffle Prize Winners awarded in Asti, Italy
1993 Yan Kucherov (Russia)
1995 Akito Takahashi (Japan), Francesco Piantelli (Italy)
November 1997 Franceco Celani (Italy)
October 1999 Melvin Miles (USA)
Giuliano Preparata Medal Winners
March 2004 Yasuhiro Iwamura
(Japan), Tadahiko Mizuno (Japan) and Antonella De Ninno
November 2004 Peter Hagelstein (USA)
at ICCF-11 Marseilles, France.
November 2005 Edmund Storms (USA),
Yoshiaki Arata (Japan), Xingzhong Li (China),
Michael McKubre (USA)
at ICCF-12, Yokohama, Japan.
September 2006 Akira Kitamura (Japan)
at Asti, Italy.
2007 Alexander Karabut (Russia), Andrei Lipson
(Russia) at ICCF13 Sochi, Russia.
October 2007 George
Miley (USA) at Catania, Italy.
2008 Irving Dardik (USA) at ICCF14 Washington, DC.
2012 John Bockris (USA) at ICCF17 Korea.
Pamela Boss (USA) at ICCF18 USA.
Jean Paul Biberian (FRANCE) at ICCF19 Italy.
Choosing the Winners
The truffle prizes were
originally awarded by a scientific commission nominated by the sponsors who
paid for the awards. As time went on, this commission was augmented by
the prize winners themselves. In June 2004, a stock of Preparata
medals was donated to ISCMNS which administers them through the
Awards Committee currently chaired by
Dr Edmund Storms.
The ISCMNS Executive Committee sees the need
to make the selection process transparent and is seeking the
opinions of the membership. Feel free to send your proposals to