The Power of Light: Nobel Prize in Physics 2018

Katarzyna Tych, Vera Katharina Hechtl, Subhamoy Mandal*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The 2018 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded to three scientists in the field of laser science: Dr. Arthur Ashkin for his invention of the optical tweezers and their application to biological systems, and Dr. Gérard Mourou and Dr. Donna Strickland for their method of generating high-intensity, ultrashort optical pulses. The awards integrate the far reaches of time and intensity scales in laser technologies, from the extremely high-intensity chirped pulse lasers (by Mourou and Strickland) to the ultralow-power beams (by Ashkin) that are capable of handling delicate biological objects and molecules [1] , [2] . The IEEE family is indeed delighted to see two of its Life Fellows, Arthur Ashkin and Gérard Mourou, as co-recipients of the awards from the Royal Swedish Academy of Science. Mourou is a past recipient of the IEEE Photonics Quantum Electronics Award and the IEEE David Sarnoff Award. Strickland has been an active author in the IEEE Journal of Quantum Electronics and IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14-19
Number of pages6
JournalIeee pulse
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes



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