– Forty years ago, theorists predicted that a new class of particle, anyons that have distinct statistical properties may exist in nature as well. The problem is that there was no direct observation of an anyon’s unique statistical properties. That is until 2020 when a team from Purdue led Michael Manfra published findings in Nature Physics that demonstrated concrete evidence of the existence of anyons. Because of this extraordinary discovery, Manfra has been selected as a finalist and honoree of the Falling Walls Foundation in the Physical Sciences category. In commemoration of the peaceful fall of the Berlin Wall, the Falling Walls Conference has developed into a world forum for the most important researchers and thinkers to discuss breakthroughs with global leaders in science, politics, and business. Each year, the Falling Walls Foundation seeks to answer the core question: “Which are the next walls to fall in science and society?” Now that Manfra has been honored as a finalist for the Falling Walls, he will have an opportunity to be honored among the Ten Breakthroughs of the Year, which will be presented live on stage in Berlin, Germany and streamed to a global audience on Nov. 9.