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61st Alpheus Smith Lecture featuring Dr. Anne L'Huillier

Dr. Anne L'Huillier

Professor, Division of Atomic Physics, Lund University

Nobel Laureate, Physics 2023


Alpheus Smith Lecture

Open to the Public


Title: The Route to Attosecond Pulses

Friday, August 16th, 2024

7:30 PM in The Fawcett Center Conference Theater


Abstract: When an intense laser interacts with a gas of atoms, high-order harmonics are generated. In the time domain, this radiation forms a train of extremely short light pulses, of the order of 100 attoseconds. Attosecond pulses allow the study of the dynamics of electrons in atoms and molecules, using pump-probe techniques. This presentation will highlight some of the key steps of the field of attosecond science. 

Bio: Anne L'Huillier is a Swedish/French researcher in attosecond science. She was born in Paris in 1958, and defended her PhD at the University Pierre et Marie Curie in 1986. She was a postdoctoral researcher at Chalmers Institute of Technology, Gothenburg (1986), University of Southern California (1988), and a visiting scientist at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (1993). She was then permanently employed as a researcher at the Commissariat à l'Energie Atomique, in Saclay, France until 1995. In 1995, she moved to Lund University, Sweden, and became a full professor in 1997. 

Her research, which includes both theory and experiment, deals with the interaction between atoms and intense laser light, and in particular the generation of high-order harmonics of the laser light, which, in the time domain, consists of trains of attosecond pulses. Currently, her research group works on attosecond source development and optimization as well as on applications, for example, the measurement of photoionization dynamics in atomic systems.

She has gotten several awards for her research, e.g. the 2011 L’Oréal-Unesco award for women in science and the 2021 Max Born prize from Optica. In 2022, she shared the Wolf Prize in Physics and the BBVA Award for Basic Sciences with P. Corkum and F. Krausz. In 2023, she shared the Nobel Prize in Physics with P. Agostini and F. Krausz. She is a member of the Swedish, American, Austrian, French, and Italian Academies of Sciences.