Trio of sci­en­tists wins No­bel Prize in Physics for laser physics

Chemical Industry Digest - - Science Pages -

The

Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has an­nounced the No­bel Prize in Physics 2018 for ground­break­ing in­ven­tions in the field of laser physics. The prize is shared be­tween 3 sci­en­tists, with one half to Arthur Ashkin, Bell Lab­o­ra­to­ries, Holmdel, USA and the other half jointly to Gérard Mourou, École Polytech­nique, Palaiseau, France Univer­sity of Michi­gan and Ann Arbor, USA and Donna Strick­land Univer­sity of Water­loo, Canada.

Arthur Ashkin in­vented op­ti­cal tweez­ers that grab par­ti­cles, atoms, viruses and other liv­ing cells with their laser beam fin­gers. This new tool al­lowed the use of ra­di­a­tion pres­sure of light to move phys­i­cal ob­jects. He suc­ceeded in get­ting laser light to push small par­ti­cles to­wards the cen­tre of the beam and to hold them there.

Gérard Mourou and Donna Strick­land paved the way to­wards the short­est and most in­tense laser pulses ever cre­ated by mankind. Us­ing an in­ge­nious ap­proach, they suc­ceeded in cre­at­ing ul­tra­short high­in­ten­sity laser pulses with­out de­stroy­ing the am­pli­fy­ing ma­te­rial.

The win­ners of the 2018 No­bel prize for Physics: (L-R): Donna Strick­land, Gérard Mourou, Arthur Ashkin

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