Director, Dr. Alan Tennant

Alan Tennant is the Lead of the Quantum Materials Initiative at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and Joint Faculty Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Tennessee. Before conducting postdoctoral research at ORNL in the late 1990s, Tennant studied physics at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, and earned his PhD at the University of Oxford. He served as a professor at the Technical University, Berlin, and institute director in the field of magnetism at the Helmholtz Center Berlin. During nine years in Berlin, he was science director of the Berlin Neutron Scattering Center and undertook research on exotic states of matter, including the observation of “nature’s ultimate symmetry,” the E8 symmetry, in a material using neutrons. He received the Europhysics Prize for the experimental observation of magnetic monopoles in spin ice in 2012. Tennant returned to ORNL in November 2013 as Chief Scientist in the Neutron Sciences Directorate.

To contact Dr. Tennant call 865-574-4160 or email

Administrative Specialist, Hope Moore-Webb

To contact Hope call 865-576-8630 or email