Richard Keith Ellis

Richard Keith Ellis
Born November 17, 1949 (1949-11-17) (age 67)
Aberdeen, UK
Institutions University of Durham
Alma mater University of Oxford
New College, Oxford
Wadham College, Oxford
Doctoral advisors Guido Altarelli
Luciano Maiani
Known for Quantum Chromodynamics Collider phenomenology
Notable awards Sakurai Prize (2009)
FRS (2009)

Richard Keith Ellis (born November 17, 1949) is a British theoretical physicist, at the University of Durham and a leading authority on perturbative Quantum Chromodynamics and Collider Phenomenology.


He graduated from the University of Oxford (MA 1971, D. Phil 1974). He has held positions at Imperial College, MIT, Caltech, CERN and the University of Rome.

Career and research

He went to Fermilab in 1984. He was Head of the Theoretical Physics Department at Fermilab from 1993 to 2004. In 2015 he moved to the University of Durham in the UK, where he is a professor of Physics and Director of the Institute for Particle Physics Phenomenology.

Ellis' work is of importance to the study of elementary particles at colliders, such as the Fermilab Tevatron, and the CERN Large Hadron Collider. Ellis has contributed in a substantial way to the interpretation of experiments performed at high energy. Together with Douglas Ross and Tony Terrano he performed the first calculation of jet structure in e+e- annihilation which allowed precise determination of the strong coupling. [1] In addition, with Guido Altarelli and Guido Martinelli he performed a calculation of lepton pair production which allow reconciliation of observed rates with theoretical calculations.[2] He has also co-authored a number of widely read papers on the theory of heavy quark production.[3][4][5] He is also co-author for the parton-level Monte Carlo program MCFM.[6]

He is the coauthor with W. J. Stirling and B. R. Webber of a book on QCD and collider physics published by Cambridge University Press in 1996.[7]

Honours and Awards

Ellis was elected a Fellow of the American Physical Society in 1988 and a Fellow of the Royal Society of London in 2009. Also in 2009, Ellis together with John Collins and Davison Soper won the J. J. Sakurai Prize for Theoretical Particle Physics, For work in perturbative Quantum Chromodynamics, including applications to problems pivotal to the interpretation of high energy particle collisions. [8]


  1. R.Keith Ellis; D.A. Ross; A.E. Terrano (1981). "The Perturbative Calculation of Jet Structure in e+ e- Annihilation". Nuclear Physics. B178 (3): 421–456. Bibcode:1981NuPhB.178..421E. doi:10.1016/0550-3213(81)90165-6.
  2. Guido Altarelli; R.Keith Ellis; G. Martinelli (1979). "Large Perturbative Corrections to the Drell-Yan Process in QCD". Nuclear Physics. B157 (3): 461–497. Bibcode:1979NuPhB.157..461A. doi:10.1016/0550-3213(79)90116-0.
  3. P. Nason, S. Dawson & R. Keith Ellis (1988). "The Total Cross-Section for the Production of Heavy Quarks in Hadronic Collisions". Nuclear Physics. B303 (4): 607–633. Bibcode:1988NuPhB.303..607N. doi:10.1016/0550-3213(88)90422-1.
  4. P. Nason, S. Dawson & R. Keith Ellis (1989). "The One Particle Inclusive Differential Cross-Section for Heavy Quark Production in Hadronic Collisions". Nuclear Physics. B327 (1): 49–92. Bibcode:1989NuPhB.327...49N. doi:10.1016/0550-3213(89)90286-1.
  5. John C. Collins & R. Keith Ellis (1991). "Heavy quark production in very high-energy hadron collisions". Nuclear Physics. B360: 3–30. Bibcode:1991NuPhB.360....3C. doi:10.1016/0550-3213(91)90288-9.
  6. Campbell, John; Ellis, Keith; Williams, Ciaran. "MCFM - Monte Carlo for FeMtobarn processes". MCFM. Fermilab.
  7. Scientific publications of R. K. Ellis on INSPIRE-HEP
  8. American Physical Society - J. J. Sakurai Prize Winners

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