The Physics Department of the Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Chile, regrets, with respect and acknowledgment, the passing of Prof. Luis Gomberoff Jaikles (Q.E.P.D), one of its most outstanding members.


Versión en castellano      Extended obituary      APS obituary

The distinguished scientist and professor of our Departamento de Física of the Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Chile, was born on November 17, 1941, and obtained his B.S. in Physics in our institution in 1962. Five years later, he obtained a Ph.D. in Mathematical Physics at the London University, England. He was a professor at the Tel Aviv University until 1980, and he also worked in France and Princeton.

Among his many academic achievements, we can highlight:

  1. "Miembro de número" de la Academia of the Chilean Academy of Science, since April 1986.

  2. He won all of the Fondecyt projects (from Conicyt, the equivalent of the NSF in the USA) that he applied to in his area, which included 14 projects as a Principal Investigator.

  3. He received the "Medalla al Mérito Académico Valentín Letelier" from the Dean of the University, November 22nd, 2005.

  4. From 1993, he had been consecutively postulated to the National Science Award (Premio Nacional de Ciencias Exactas).

  5. He is the author of more that 140 ISI publications, with more than 1000 citations. His last work was published in 2010. The extensive list of his publications, with the appropriate statistics, can be found in

Furthermore, he has an extensive list of other publications, some peer-reviewed, such as book chapters, proceedings, etc. A list of these publicaciones can be seen here, adding to about 200 publications.

His main area of research was theoretical physics. His first contributions where in particle and quantum field theory. He started working in plasmas (ionized material) when there was great hope for controlled nuclear fusion. It is precisely in plasma physics that he has some of his most relevant contributions, not only in controlled nuclear fusion, but also in space physics and plasma astrophysics, with important publications about the plasma in the solar wind, the Earth's magnetosphere, the neutron star magnetospheres, among others.

He is one of the leaders in the study of ion-cyclotron and Alfvén waves, in their linear and nonlinear manifestations, which explain phenomena in the solar wind and the Earth's magnetosphere, and in particular in how is the fast solar wind generated.

The Journal of Geophysical Research-Space Physics of the United States, positioned Luis Gomberoff as one of the most relevant space physicists in the world, and selected him as a permanent editor, which is a selected group of scientists that determine which articles can be published in the journal.

Luis Gomberoff was also one of the pioneers of Plasma Physics education in our country and in Latin America, with important participations in scientific and educational conferences and workshops. A large number of graduate and undergraduate students took his plasma courses in our Physics Department. Furthermore, he produced a significant number of master and PhD students, and some of them have now academic positions in important national and international universities.

Some appearances in the national media para be seen in news section of the web page of the Facultad de Ciencias of the Universidad de Chile, and in the news section web page of the Departamento de Física of the Facultad de Ciencias of the Universidad de Chile.

Departamento de Física

Última actualización: 13 agosto 2012

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