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Who'll Win a Nobel Prize? Analysts Look Into Crystal Ball

Scientists who study the painful taste of hot peppers — or the joyful sight of a mobile-phone display — are on a list of potential Nobel laureates.
Image: Nobel medal
The Nobel Prizes are to be announced next month.Gunnar Lier / AFP - Getty Images file
/ Source: Reuters

Scientists who discovered phenomena as different as the molecular mechanisms of pain, organic light-emitting diodes that illuminate mobile phones and a new quantum state of matter are top contenders for Nobel Prizes next month, according to an annual analysis by Thomson Reuters. Since 2002, Thomson Reuters' Intellectual Property and Science unit has correctly predicted 35 Nobel laureates, including nine who won in the year of the forecast and 16 who won within two years. IP&S bases its forecasts on scientists' citations, or references to their published papers by others.

Some of the research deemed Nobel-worthy could be tough to explain: One physicist who is thought to have a shot described how "spin frustration causes sinusoidal antiferromagnetic ordering," while three in contention for chemistry developed "the reversible addition-fragmentation chain-transfer polymerization process." Fortunately, there's still a little time to study up. The Nobel parade begins on Oct. 6 in Stockholm with the announcement of the prize in medicine or physiology.



— Reuters