Professor Nan Yao is a leading scholar in materials characterization. He is the founding director of Princeton's preeminent Imaging and Analysis Center. As a teacher, he is a ten-time teaching award recipient at Princeton University. As a scientist, his contributions include co-discovery of the first natural quasicrystal, the third form of solid besides crystalline and non-crystalline in nature. He received a Ph.D. from Arizona State University and worked at both Shell and ExxonMobil company prior to joining Princeton. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and a fellow of the Microscopy Society of America.