Physics Nobel goes to Serge Haroche and David Wineland


David Wineland
is internationally recognized for developing the technique of using lasers to cool ions (electrically charged atoms or molecules) to near absolute zero, the coldest possible temperature. Wineland achieved the first demonstration of laser cooling in 1978 and has built on that breakthrough with 30 years of experiments that represent the first or best in the world – often both – in using trapped laser-cooled ions to test theories in quantum physics and demonstrate crucial applications such as new forms of computation.
Wineland’s breakthroughs led to work by groups throughout the world on laser cooling and trapping of neutral atoms, culminating in the 1997 Nobel Prize to William D. Phillips of NIST, Steven Chu and Claude Cohen-Tannoudji for development of neutral atom laser cooling. In addition, Wineland’s research also helped make possible the work by Eric Cornell of NIST and JILA, a joint institute of NIST and the University of Colorado at Boulder, who with Wolfgang Ketterle and Carl Wieman received the 2001 Nobel Prize for using laser cooling to create the world’s first Bose-Einstein condensate.
Wineland’s work led to the development of laser-cooled atomic clocks, the current state of the art in time and frequency standards. His laser-cooled trapped ion technique was used by members of his group to demonstrate an experimental clock based on a single mercury ion that is currently the best in the world, as well as a “logic clock” using an aluminum ion that is nearly as accurate.
Wineland also helped launch the field of experimental quantum computing. Through many pioneering experiments, his group was the first to successfully demonstrate the building blocks of a practical quantum computer, a device that could solve some problems, such as breaking the best encryption codes, that are intractable using today’s technology. He also helped train new generations of scientists working throughout the world and has published more than 250 refereed articles, many in the most prestigious research journals.
Originally from Sacramento, Calif., Wineland has worked at NIST laboratories in Boulder, Colo., since 1975. He received a bachelor of science in physics from the University of California at Berkeley and master’s and doctoral degrees in physics from Harvard University, where his advisor was Norman Ramsey, a 1989 Nobel Laureate in physics. Before joining NIST, Wineland worked as a postdoctoral research associate at the University of Washington with Hans Dehmelt, who shared the 1989 Nobel Physics prize with Ramsey.
Read also: www.nist.gov

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Serge Haroche
main research activities have been in quantum optics and quantum information science.
He has made important contributions to Cavity Quantum Electrodynamics (Cavity QED), the domain of quantum optics which studies the behaviour of atoms interacting strongly with the field confined in a high-Q cavity.
An atom-photon system isolated from the outside world by highly reflecting metallic walls realizes a very simple experimental model which Serge Haroche has used to test fundamental aspects of quantum physics such as state superposition, entanglement, complementarity and decoherence.
Some of these experiments are actual realizations in the laboratory of the “thought experiments” imagined by the founding fathers of quantum mechanics.
Serge Haroche’s main achievements in cavity QED include the observation of single atom spontaneous emission enhancement in a cavity (1983), the direct monitoring of the decoherence of mesoscopic superpositions of states (so-called Schrödinger cat states) (1996) and the quantum-non-demolition measurement of a single photon (1999).
By manipulating atoms and photons in high-Q cavities, he has also demonstrated many steps of quantum information procedure such as the generation of atomatom and atom-photon entanglement (1997), the realization of a photonic memory (1997) and the operation of quantum logic gates involving photons and atoms as “quantum bits” (1999).
In 2006, Serge Haroche and his ENS team have developed a super-high-Q cavity able to store photons between mirrors for times longer than a tenth of a second.
Trapping light quanta in this cavity has allowed the ENS team to detect repeatedly and non-destructively the same field, to project it into states with definite photon numbers (so called Fock states) and to observe the quantum jumps of light due to the loss or gain of a single photon in the cavity (2007).
This constitutes a completely new way to look at light. Whereas photons are usually destroyed upon measurement, they can now be counted and counted again in the cavity as one would do with marbles in a box.
This non-destructive detection method has led Serge Haroche and his team to develop novel ways to generate and reconstruct non-classical states of radiation trapped in a cavity and to investigate in details their decoherence, the phenomenon essential to explain the transition from quantum to classical (2008).
The ENS team has recently pushed these experiments further by demonstrating a quantum feedback procedure achieving the preparation of predetermined non-classical state of a field trapped in a cavity and counteracting the effects of decoherence on these states (2011).
Many of the ideas developed by S.Haroche and his research team in microwave cavity QED experiments have been exploited in other contexts to build new devices playing an increasing role in opto-electronics and optical communication science.
Manipulating the emission properties of quantum dots embedded in solid state micro-cavities has become a widely exploited method to build solid state sources and generate non classical light of various sorts.
Strong coupling of light emitters with micro-cavity structures is being developed to achieve operations useful for quantum communication and quantum information processing purposes. By coupling artificial atoms made of superconducting junctions Serge Haroche main research activities have been in quantum optics and quantum information science. He has made important contributions to Cavity Quantum Electrodynamics (Cavity QED), the domain of quantum optics which studies the behaviour of atoms interacting strongly with the field confined in a high-Q cavity. An atom-photon system isolated from the outside world by highly reflecting metallic walls realizes a very simple experimental model which Serge Haroche has used to test fundamental aspects of quantum physics such as state superposition, entanglement, complementarity and decoherence.
Some of these experiments are actual realizations in the laboratory of the “thought experiments” imagined by the founding fathers of quantum mechanics.
Serge Haroche’s main achievements in cavity QED include the observation of single atom spontaneous emission enhancement in a cavity (1983), the direct monitoring of the decoherence of mesoscopic superpositions of states (so-called Schrödinger cat states) (1996) and the quantum-non-demolition measurement of a single photon (1999).
By manipulating atoms and photons in high-Q cavities, he has also demonstrated many steps of quantum information procedure such as the generation of atomatom and atom-photon entanglement (1997), the realization of a photonic memory (1997) and the operation of quantum logic gates involving photons and atoms as “quantum bits” (1999).
In 2006, Serge Haroche and his ENS team have developed a super-high-Q cavity able to store photons between mirrors for times longer than a tenth of a second. Trapping light quanta in this cavity has allowed the ENS team to detect repeatedly and non-destructively the same field, to project it into states with definite photon numbers (so called Fock states) and to observe the quantum jumps of light due to the loss or gain of a single photon in the cavity (2007).
This constitutes a completely new way to look at light. Whereas photons are usually destroyed upon measurement, they can now be counted and counted again in the cavity as one would do with marbles in a box.
This non-destructive detection method has led Serge Haroche and his team to develop novel ways to generate and reconstruct non-classical states of radiation trapped in a cavity and to investigate in details their decoherence, the phenomenon essential to explain the transition from quantum to classical (2008).
The ENS team has recently pushed these experiments further by demonstrating a quantum feedback procedure achieving the preparation of predetermined non-classical state of a field trapped in a cavity and counteracting the effects of decoherence on these states (2011).
Many of the ideas developed by S.Haroche and his research team in microwave cavity QED experiments have been exploited in other contexts to build new devices playing an increasing role in opto-electronics and optical communication science.
Manipulating the emission properties of quantum dots embedded in solid state micro-cavities has become a widely exploited method to build solid state sources and generate non classical light of various sorts.
Strong coupling of light emitters with micro-cavity structures is being developed to achieve operations useful for quantum communication and quantum information processing purposes. By coupling artificial atoms made of superconducting junctions with strip-line microwave cavities, many groups word-wide are now developing a new field of physics dubbed “Circuit QED” which borrows many of its concepts from microwave cavity QED experiments.
These examples show the impact of fundamental Cavity QED work on areas of research which could lead to promising applications for technology.
www.college-de-france.frwww.nist.gov

One thought on “Physics Nobel goes to Serge Haroche and David Wineland

  1. Did David Wineland and Serge Haroche Steal Idea For The Nobel Physics Prize?
    newsblaze.com/story/20130112074228nnnn.nb/topstory.html

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