UCI physicist Jing Xia is winner of the 2017 Macronix Prize, awarded to outstanding Chinese scientists working outside Asia. Steve Zylius / UCI

Jing Xia, UCI associate professor of physics & astronomy, has been awarded the 2017 Macronix Prize by the International Organization of Chinese Physicists and Astronomers. Also called the Outstanding Young Researcher Award, the honor is given to early-career faculty researchers of Chinese ethnicity who are working outside Asia. “I am very pleased to have been selected to receive the Macronix Prize,” said Xia, an expert in advanced solid-state materials. “Scientists from China make a fair amount of sacrifices to study and work so far from home. It’s nice to gain some acknowledgement of our accomplishments.” Xia explores the properties of exotic materials that may one day be useful in quantum computers and advanced electronics. He conducts much of his research with a device in his UCI laboratory called a Sagnac interferometer, one of only two such machines in the world that he built with his own hands. Xia said it’s the most powerful magnetic microscope in existence. Jonathan Feng, UCI professor of physics & astronomy and 2004 winner of the Macronix Prize, said: “Competition for the Macronix Prize is fierce, and many past honorees have become members of the National Academy of Science and other prominent organizations. We’re thrilled that another UCI researcher is listed among its winners.”