Willy Benoit was born in Sentier (VD-Switzerland) in 1938. After obtaining the diploma in Physics in 1962 and the PhD in 1968 from EPUL, he pursues his academic career at EPFL and is appointed Professor in 1974. He developed the Laboratory of Physical Metallurgy at the Institut de Génie Atomique during 30 years. His activities concern the Mechanical Spectroscopy applied to materials ranging from pure metals to ceramics and composites. He directed 35 PhD thesis and is the author of 230 publications. He is member of a number of Scientific Committees and referee of International Journals. In 2002, he was awarded the Zener medal for his outstanding contribution to the field of Mechanical Spectroscopy.
The research activity of Professor Benoit mainly concern the application of mechanical spectroscopy to understanding the physical basis of the mechanical properties of materials. The research subjects are very diversified: dislocation dynamics (kink-dynamics, interaction of dislocations with point defects, recristallization) in metals, martensitic transformation in shape memory alloys, the mechanical properties of ceramics and ceramic-metal composites, nano-scale mapping of anelastic and tribological properties of materials using AFM. W. Benoit is the author of more than 230 publications and reviews in international journals.
Willy Benoit has been teaching at EPFL the courses of General Physics, Mechanics, Thermodynamics and Physical Metallurgy. He is also the co-author of the book: Mécanique Générale with Prof. C. Gruber.