Research in Laser Physics take Center Stage as Three Win Nobel Prize 2018

Research in Laser Physics take Center Stage as Three Win Nobel Prize 2018


The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has decided to award the Nobel Prize in Physics 2018 ‘for groundbreaking inventions in the field of laser physics’ with one half to Arthur Ashkin and the other half jointly to Gérard Mourou and Donna Strickland, the Nobel Prize tweeted.

Ultra-sharp laser beams make it possible to cut or drill holes in various materials extremely precisely – even in living matter. Millions of eye operations are performed every year with the sharpest of laser beams

For the first time in 55 years, a woman has received the Nobel prize in physics 2018. She received it alongside Arthur Ashkin, Gérard Mourou, the other two honorees.

Gérard Mourou and Donna Strickland – the 2018 NobelPrize recipients – paved the way towards the shortest and most intense laser pulses created by humankind. The technique they developed opened up new areas of research and led to broad industrial and medical applications. Mourou and Strickland’s technique is known as chirped pulse amplication, CPA

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Dr. Donna Strickland, Associate Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Waterloo, is the first woman to receive this award in 55 years and even more record-breaking is the fact that in all the history of the award, she is the third woman to receive it. She joins Maria Goeppert-Mayer (1963) and Marie Curie (1903) as the only three women who have won the award.

‘We need to celebrate women physicists because they’re out there… I’m honored to be one of those women,’ says Donna Strickland in response to the Nobel Prize tweet announcing her award.

Ashkin is the oldest ever to receive the award at 95 years of age. He won the award for his groundbreaking research in the field of laser physics. Ashkin’s optical tweezers grab particles, atoms, and molecules with their laser beam fingers. They can examine and manipulate viruses, bacteria, and other living cells without damaging them. ‘New opportunities for observing and controlling the machinery of life have been created,’ says the Nobel committee.

‘Ashkin received his Ph.D. at Cornell in 1952, sixty-six years ago,’ Cornell University was quick to register their pride in a tweet.




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