The University of Southampton

Dr Alun Vaughan honoured by Institute of Physics

Published: 10 May 2007

Dr Alun Vaughan at the University of Southampton’s School of Electronics & Computer Science (ECS) has been made a Fellow of the Institute of Physics (IoP) in recognition of his contributions to the field of dielectrics.

A dielectric material is a substance that is a poor conductor of electricity, but an efficient supporter of electrostatic fields. Dielectric materials are a vital element of all electronic and electrical equipment.

Dr Vaughan has carried out extensive research into the electrical properties of polymers and dielectric breakdown, understanding the processes of stress and ageing. His group at ECS has an international reputation and their work in dielectrics is virtually unique in the UK.

‘There are lots of other people doing things directly related to plant but in terms of the fundamental physics of high voltage dielectric materials, there aren’t many key players in the UK. If you go to the big international conferences, you find that what we do is of a very high standard and will compare with anything around the world.’

Dr Vaughan has now moved on to look at the field of nanodielectrics, which will be a key theme of the 9th IEEE International Conference on Solid Dielectrics on 8-13 July, which is being organised by ECS.

Dr Vaughan’s external activities include: Honorary Treasury of the Dielectrics Group of the Institute of Physics, a member of both the Executive and Council of the Institution of Engineering and Technology Power Academy, Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) College member and Director of Southampton Dielectric Consultants Ltd and of ECS Partners Limited.

Commenting on his appointment as a Fellow of the IoP, he said: ‘I have been involved with the IoP for many years, both on the Dielectrics Committee for five years and as Honorary Treasurer. It is an honour now to be recognised as a Fellow of the Institute.’

For further information contact:

Joyce Lewis, Communications Manager, School of Electronics and Computer Science, University of Southampton (tel. 023 8059 5453; email

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