Image Attoelectronics


Eleftherios Goulielmakis , Experimental Physics, Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics

Research profile for IMPRS:

Our research aims at tracing and controlling of electron dynamics in fundamental systems such as atoms and molecules as well as in more complex systems like clusters or nanoparticles. To cope with the tremendously fast motion of electrons in these systems—typically clocked in tens to thousands of attoseconds— we develop and use intense light transients with precisely sculpted field waveforms. With these transient fields we can exert ultrafast forces on electrons and drive their motion with attosecond precision. We strive to discover the principles that dominate electron dynamics and to explore the routes towards advancement of electronics to Petahertz frequencies and beyond (Attoelectronics).

Developing light transients with precisely sculpted field waveforms—the enabling technology of of attosecond control of electrons— is at the core of our group’s activities group. Currently we are able to generate and use light transients of record-short temporal confinement (<0.9 cycles, and T~ 2 fs, see for example Science 334, 195 (2011) ). They are based on coherent broadband light sources of light spanning the infrared, visible, deep and vacuum ultraviolet part of the spectrum, as well, as novel types of field synthesizers operating over several optical octaves.

To trace the induced dynamics with attosecond resolution we combine light transients with established techniques of attosecond science, such as attosecond streaking and attosecond absorption spectroscopy. We have recently been able to trigger ultrafast electronic motion in ions and to trace its fine details with attosecond precision (Nature 466, 739 (2010) Science 334, 195 (2011).

Doctorate theses are announced in the following fields:

Light field synthesis in the deep ultraviolet, Attosecond control of collective electron dynamics.

Contribution to IMPRS curriculum:

Photonics I

Lecturer: Dr. E. Goulielmakis (3+1 hours/week)

the lecture course introduces the five models of light & its interaction with matter:

  • ray (geometrical) optics,
  • wave optics,
  • electromagnetic optics,
  • semiclassical theory of light-matter interactions and
  • quantum optics,

postulates their laws and – with the help of these successively more advanced (I - V) models – addresses the generation, propagation, manipulation, and advanced applications of light.