35 years ago, Donna Strickland and Gérard Mourou demonstrated for the first time the amplification and recompression of optical chirped pulses. In 2018, they earned the Nobel prize in Physics for this astounding scientific breakthrough. This so-called Chirped Pulse Amplification (CPA) method paved the way to ultra-intense lasers and has revolutionized their use, ranging from eye surgery to particle physics.
On February 14th, 2020, École Polytechnique will celebrate the 35th anniversary of CPA by organizing a colloquium in honor of its two inventors: "A journey with lasers and physics at high intensities".
Nowadays, thousands of researchers worldwide involve CPA in a broad spectrum of applications and this special day represents an exclusive opportunity to bring them together with Gérard Mourou and Donna Strickland to review the story of this scientific adventure. Thematic lectures will highlight the impact of this invention, from research to industry, and explore the prospects of future discoveries enabled by CPA.
Photo copyrights Bengt Nyman - (CC BY 2.0)