Jun John Sakurai (桜井 純, Sakurai Jun, January 31, 1933 – November 1, 1982) was a Japanese-American particle physicist and theorist.
Jun John Sakurai
|Died||November 1, 1982 (aged 49)|
|Nationality||Japan, United States|
|Alma mater||Bronx High School of Science|
|Known for||Sakurai and Napolitano|
|Institutions||University of Chicago|
University of California, Los Angeles
California Institute of Technology
Universities of Tokyo and Nagoya
University of Paris at Orsay
Scuola Normale Superiore at Pisa
Stanford Linear Accelerator
CERN at Geneva
Max Planck Institute at Munich
|Doctoral advisor||Hans Bethe|
While a graduate student at Cornell University, Sakurai independently discovered the V-A theory of weak interactions.
He authored the popular graduate text Modern Quantum Mechanics (1985-posthumous) and other texts such as Invariance Principles and Elementary Particles (1964) and Advanced Quantum Mechanics (1967).
J. J. Sakurai was born in Tokyo in 1933 and moved to the United States when he was a high school student. He studied Physics at Harvard and Cornell, where he proposed his theory of weak interactions. After receiving his PhD from Cornell in 1958 he joined the faculty at University of Chicago, becoming a full professor in 1964. In 1970, Sakurai moved to the University of California, Los Angeles.
As a graduate student, he proposed the V−A theory of weak interactions, independently of Robert Marshak, George Sudarshan, Richard Feynman, and Murray Gell-Mann. In 1960, he published a paper on the theory of strong interactions based on Abelian and non-Abelian (Yang-Mills) gauge invariance.
In addition to his published papers, Sakurai authored several textbooks. These include Invariance Principles and Elementary Particles (1964), Advanced Quantum Mechanics (1967), and Modern Quantum Mechanics. The third volume was left unfinished due to Sakurai's sudden death in 1982, but was later edited and completed with the help of his wife, Noriko Sakurai, and colleague San Fu Tuan. Modern Quantum Mechanics is probably his most well known book and is still widely used for graduate studies today.
In 1984 the family and friends of J. J. Sakurai endowed a prize for theoretical physicists in his honor. The goal of the prize as stated on the APS website is to encourage outstanding work in the field of particle theory. Recipients receive a $10,000 grant, an allowance for travel to the ceremony, and a certificate citing their contributions to particle physics.
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