Fert, Albert älbâr´ fâr [key], 1938– French physicist, b. Carcassonne, France. After receiving his Ph.D. at the Univ. of Paris-Sud in 1970 Fert accepted a teaching position there and headed a research group, becoming a professor in 1976. In 1988 he discovered a physical effect he named giant magnetoresistance (GMR) because tiny changes in a magnetic field produced large changes in electrical resistance. For this discovery, which gave rise to the field of spintronics , he shared the 2007 Nobel Prize in physics with Peter Grünberg , who had independently discovered GMR. Since 1995 he has served as the scientific director of a joint laboratory between France's National Scientific Research Center and the Thales Group.
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