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OSA | Living History

James J. Wynne

OSA Awards & Distinctions

James J Wynne earned a B.A. in physics in 1964 and a Ph.D. in applied physics in 1969 from Harvard University. He has spent his entire career with IBM Research. Wynne and two IBM colleagues discovered excimer laser surgery in 1981. Their discovery laid the foundation for the development of techniques for changing the shape of the human cornea, thereby surgically correcting the common vision abnormalities of myopia, astigmatism, and hyperopia. Two such techniques, LASIK (laser in-situ keratomeliusus) and PRK (photorefractive keratectomy) are widely practiced throughout the world. For their discovery, Dr. Wynne and his colleagues were inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame (NIHF) in 2002, won the R. W. Wood Prize of the Optical Society (OSA) in 2004, and were awarded the Rank Prize for Opto-Electronics in 2010. In 2012, they were presented the National Medal of Technology and Innovation by President Barak Obama. Wynne is a Fellow of OSA and APS.

Document Created: 18 Feb 2021
Last Updated: 18 Feb 2021