Carl Zeiss Research Award to Professor Anne L’Huillier

This year’s Carl Zeiss Research Award has been given to Professor Anne L’Huillier from Lund University in Sweden for her pioneering work in the field of high harmonic generation which has laid the foundation for the generation of attosecond impulses and enabled key advances in attosecond physics.

The winner of this year’s Carl Zeiss Research Award, one of the most renowned honours in optics, goes to Professor Anne L’Huillier from Lund University in Sweden.
L’Huillier is being honoured for her pioneering work in the field of high harmonic generation which has laid the foundation for the generation of attosecond impulses and enabled key advances in attosecond physics.
“Professor L’Huillier not only described the theory of attosecond technology, but also verified it experimentally,” stated the jury in announcing its decision. Her works enables further development and application of this technology.
Attosecond impulses can be used, for example, to observe the movement of electrons in atoms or molecules in real-time. This plays a key role in understanding general physical phenomena or chemical reactions at the atomic level. The promise of attosecond technology is to record ultrashort time-lapse movies from the inside of atoms and molecules.
1 attosecond (as) = 0.000,000,000,000,000,001 seconds = 10-18 seconds is a very short time: even light that travels at the unimaginable speed of 300,000 kilometres per second moves less than one millionth of a millimetre in one attosecond – not even from one end of a molecule to the other.
The Carl Zeiss Research Award will be presented to Professor L’Huillier on Wednesday, 19 June 2013.
Anne L’Huillier is one of a long list of renowned award-winners. Past recipients of the prize include subsequent Nobel laureates Eric A. Cornell and Ahmed Zewail.
With a value of EUR 25,000, the Carl Zeiss Research Award is presented every two years to honour experimental and theoretical work in the field of optics. It is presented by the Ernst Abbe Fund. This was founded by the Carl Zeiss Foundation and is managed by the Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft (a joint initiative of German industries to promote science and higher education).