• March 8, 2021

    press release — A new study carried out by a team of laser physicists, molecular biologists and physicians based at LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics has confirmed the temporal stability of the molecular composition of blood in a population of healthy individuals. The data provide a basis for a new method of monitoring the constituents of blood and detecting alterations that reveal changes in a person’s state of health.

  • January 28, 2021

    press release — Ioachim Pupeza and Maximilian Högner from the Field-Resolved Infrared Metrology Research Group have co-authored the Review Article “Extreme-ultraviolet frequency combs for precision metrology and attosecond science” in Nature Photonics, surveying the coming-of-age of cavity-enhanced high-order harmonic generation for precision time- and frequency-domain metrology. Femtosecond modelocked lasers emitting trains of coherent visible/infrared pulses have steadily advanced our understanding of basic processes in nature. For example, optical clocks employ frequency-comb techniques for the most precise measurement of time, permitting the search for minuscule drifts of natural constants. Furthermore, the generation of optical-field-synchronised extreme-ultraviolet attosecond bursts affords real-time measurements of fundamental electron dynamics. In a passive optical resonator – or enhancement cavity – the pulse train of a visible/infrared modelocked laser can be resonantly enhanced, providing the intensities necessary for high-order harmonic generation in gases at repetition rates of several tens of MHz. Thus, these coherent radiation sources uniquely combine broadband vacuum- and extreme-ultraviolet spectral coverage with pulse repetition rates and coherence properties akin to those of modelocked lasers. The paper reviews the milestones of the development of this technology, as well as recent applications and prospects, including precision frequency-comb spectroscopy of electronic and potentially nuclear transitions, and low-space-charge attosecond-temporal-resolution photoelectron spectroscopy with nearly 100% temporal detection duty cycle. Picture: Christian Hackenberger

  • January 19, 2021

    short report — It is with a modicum of melancholy, leavened with a pinch of justified pride, that we bid farewell to the exhibition on “Lasers | Light | Life” at the ESO Supernova, which has now closed. The exhibition in the Rotunda of the ESO Supernova Planetarium and Visitors’ Centre was designed to acquaint the general public with the history of the laser and with current trends in the continuing development of laser-based technologies. The show was a great success, attracting well over 50,000 people. – And the many positive comments recorded in our Digital Visitors’ Book were ample reward for the work we put into the exhibition. The whole team at attoworld would like to express its heartfelt gratitude to everyone involved in the outreach activities for their cooperation and commitment to the project. Their dedication and enthusiasm made a vital contribution to the success of the venture. Special thanks also go to the Director-General of ESO, Prof. Xavier Barcon, and to the Managing Director of the ESO Supernova, Tania Johnston (and the members of her team) for their help and hospitality – and most particularly for their judicious management of the precautionary measures necessitated by the unforeseeable arrival of SARS-CoV-2 in 2020. Despite the unavoidable intermittent closures, their efforts ensured that the exhibition could be converted into a safe space for visitors. The project was an exciting, interdisciplinary and informative venture. The fact that it was explicitly conceived for the unique and spectacular setting offered by the ESO Supernova presented the exhibition’s architects – from the Munich-based firm PLAN AG – with very particular challenges, to which they responded splendidly. They developed an appropriately striking concept, which could be realized without interfering in any way with the integrity of the existing structure. And the inclusion of the Laser Harp meant that the show included a unique and unforgettable attraction for visitors of all ages. Those who wish to refresh their memories, and those who couldn’t make the trip to the ESO Supernova in person, can still pay a visit to the exhibition’s homepage ( 

  • December 21, 2020

    press release — The „field resolved infrared science“ group has demonstrated for the first time the generation of octave-spanning mid-infrared using a BGSe nonlinear crystal. A Cr:ZnS laser system delivering 28-fs pulses at a central wavelength of 2.4 µm is used as the pump source, which drives the intra-pulse difference frequency generation inside the crystal. As a result, a coherent broadband mid-infrared continuum spanning from 6 to 18 µm has been obtained. It shows that the BGSe crystal is a promising material for broadband, few-cycle mid-infrared generation via frequency down conversion with femtosecond pump sources.<br /> <b>Original publication:</b><br /> J. Zhang, Q. Wang, J. Hao, H. Liu, J. Yao, Z. Li, J. Liu, K. Mak<br> &quot;Broadband, few-cycle mid-infrared continuum based on the intra-pulse difference frequency generation with BGSe crystals&quot;<br> <i><b>Optics Express 28</b>, 37903 (2020)</i>

  • December 8, 2020

    graduation — Marinus Huber has defended his doctoral thesis titled: “Field-Resolved Infrared Spectroscopy From Fundamentals towards Medical Applications”. We congratulate warmly on passing successfully the exam.

  • November 30, 2020

    short report — According to Web of Science, Prof. Ferenc Krausz is one of the most cited researchers worldwide. The Web of Science is the information and technology provider for the global scientific research community. Each year, Web of Science identifies the world’s most influential researchers. The selection marks the few who have been most frequently cited by their peers over the last decade. In 2020, fewer than 6,200, or about 0.1%, of the world's researchers, in 21 research fields and across multiple fields, have earned this exclusive distinction.

  • November 23, 2020

    short report — Congratulations to Dr. Ernst Fill. He has just celebrated his 80th birthday with his family. A surprise visit from the BIRD team came to his front door. The team brought a very special gift. A homemade cake. Its top side was decorated with an enhancement cavity with a thin taut foil as coupler, which is applied at a 45 degree angle. This arrangement was developed by Ernst Fill a few years ago. His invention is now not only very useful in infrared spectroscopy, but even a a culinary delicacy.

  • October 29, 2020

    short report — We would like to wish a warm welcome to a new colleague: Since October 2020, the research group around Dr. Mihaela Žigman has been supported by Viola Zóka, who is our new medical laboratory assistant!<br /> The young Hungarian fellow is a proud alumnus of the University of Pécs, where she earned her Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry. She had developed a strong passion for chemistry early on which was even more intensified while she was acquiring professional experiences at a company laboratory in Nagykanizsa (Hidrofilt Ltd. Hungary). She was performing qualitative and quantitative analysis of water samples using various analytical chemistry methods. <br /> Shortly after Viola has heard about the newly emerging infrared molecular fingerprinting technique, which by far allows for more sophisticated analysis of human blood samples than other methods she was familiar with, she applied for a job at the Center for Molecular Fingerprinting (CMF) in Budapest. CMF has a very close collaboration with the Laser Physics Department of the Ludwig Maximilians University (LMU) in Munich, blood samples collected for clinical studies of CMF will therefore be analyzed at the LMU. <br /> Since it is still a couple of years ahead until CMF is establishing its own analytical laser laboratories, Viola has changed her residency from Hungary to Germany to pursue a new professional career at the Garching Research Center and directly fuel the CMF research goals from there. Together with laser scientist and molecular biologists, Viola will analyze blood samples for their molecular composition using infrared spectroscopy - something that everyone is very much excited about!

  • May 18, 2020

    press release — For the first time the AMO group made a comparison between magnetron sputtering and ion beam sputtering on dispersive mirrors (DM). DMs exploited as intra-cavity and extra-cavity dispersion compensation components have been widely used in all kinds of ultrafast laser systems and become the key elements to control dispersion in ultrafast laser systems. <br /> One of the compared mirrors was a broadband DM which is known as double angle DM, providing a group delay dispersion (GDD) of -40 fs<sup>2</sup> in the range of 550 nm to 1050 nm. The other one was a robust highly dispersive mirror, which provides a GDD of about -275 fs<sup>2</sup> at 800 nm and covers the wavelength range from 690 nm to 890 nm. <br /> Broadband dispersive mirrors (BBDMs) and high dispersive mirrors (HDMs) are the two mostly used DMs. Magnetron sputtering (MS) and ion beam sputtering (IBS) are the most widespread coating processes for manufacturing DMs. However, there is no study about comparisons of MS-produced and IBS-produced DMs, especially for the two widely used DMs (BBDMs and HDMs). In the new work of the AMO group, the design, production and characterization of (i) double angle DMs (BBDMs covering one octave) and (ii) HDMs were demonstrated. <br /> <b>Original publication:</b> Comparison of magnetron sputtering and ion beam sputtering on dispersive mirrors<br /> Applied Physics B 126, 82 (2020)

  • May 14, 2020

    short report — A great honour for the scientists around Kafai Mak. At the special event about “What's Next in Ultrafast Optics – Hot Topics at CLEO: 2020” in the framework of the CLEO conference, Clara Sarazeno and Federico Furch especially highlighted the upcoming talk of Nathalie Nagl. She will present the latest work of the team about “Directly Diode-Pumped Few-Optical-Cycle Cr:ZnS Laser at 800 mW of Average Power”. Nathalie will give the talk in the Session: SF3H, Ultrafast Oscillators and Amplifiers II on Saturday 16th of May night between 00:00 and 00:30 AM, German time (03:00 PM ~ 03:30 PM Pacific Time).

  • May 11, 2020

    press release — Physicists of the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics have measured the flight times of electrons in molecules after their creation with light. The small quantum particles were emitted from a specific atom within the molecules, which enabled to measure the molecular influence on their emission time. The results open new opportunities to study the forces that are holding molecules together in better detail.

  • May 6, 2020

    short report — Like virtually everything else during the current coronavirus crisis, this year’s Wings for Life Run took place unusual conditions. In accordance with the need for social distancing, the event was more reminiscent of a time trial in cycling. This time, participants were literally on their own. Some were equipped with running apps, while others were happy to tackle a couple of kilometers at a comfortable pace with their kids/juniors. Together we ran 180.43 kilometres. Nevertheless, for the LAP team, it was an enjoyable and thoroughly communal experience, as these pictures demonstrate. We look forward to seeing you all at next year‘s Wings for Life Run – hopefully together again at the usual venue in the Olympia Park.

  • May 1, 2020

    press release — Infrared spectroscopy is a versatile method for studying biological samples in liquid media. This led to numerous applications such as label-free identification of cells and bacteria, quantification of clinically relevant parameters in body fluids and early cancer detection using liquid biopsies.

  • April 23, 2020

    short report — Under conditions that provide maximum protection against SARS-CoV-2 infection, the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics has resumed its research activities. This has been made possible by <span class="propername">Prof. Dong Eon Kim</span> at POSTECH in Pohang (South Korea) and <span class="propername">Prof. Zhiyi Wei</span> at the <span class="propername">Chinese Academy of Science’s Institute of Physics</span> in Beijing, who have kindly supplied us with re-usable face masks, which are now being distributed to our research team. We wish to take this opportunity to express our heartfelt gratitude to our esteemed colleagues in the Far East for their generosity.<br /> Thanks to the introduction of appropriate safety measures and the self-discipline of the Attoworld community, we are now in a position to continue a series of important experiments – and together we will successfully cope with the strains imposed by the present emergency. Stay safe!

  • March 26, 2020

    short report — The Max Planck Society (Max-Planck Gesellschaft, MPG) has awarded Ioachim Pupeza and his team a »technology transfer« grant, aiming at validating infrared electric-field-resolved spectroscopy (IR-FRS) for gas-phase samples.<br /> Our team has pioneered the femtosecond-laser-based technologies underlying high-sensitivity IR-FRS of liquid-phase molecular fingerprinting [1]. The new project aims at the demonstration of the potential of the new spectroscopic technology for gaseous samples. In particular, compared to strongly-absorbing liquids, gases afford orders-of-magnitude longer interaction lengths with the excitation radiation. Recirculating a strong, few-cycle femtosecond infrared pulse in a resonant optical cavity (i.e., femtosecond enhancement cavity, fsEC) containing the gaseous sample promises to dramatically improve the limit of detection in gas-phase spectroscopy.<br /> The goal of optimizing the bandwidth-versus-finesse trade-off in optical resonators ties in with our expertise in the field of fsEC [2,3]. The project builds a bridge connecting basic research on electric-field-resolved spectroscopy and analytical application. In particular, the successful transfer of IR-FRS technology to gaseous samples will benefit biomedical applications pursued at the Laboratory of Attosecond Physics by the BIRD (Broadband Infrared Diagnostics) research group.<br /> <p> &nbsp; </p> [1] I. Pupeza, M. Huber, M. Trubetskov, W. Schweinberger, S.A. Hussain, C. Hofer, K. Fritsch, M. Poetzlberger, L. Vamos, E. Fill, T. Amotchkina, K.V. Kepesidis, A. Apolonski, N. Karpowicz, V. Pervak, O. Pronin, F. Fleischmann, A. Azzeer, M. Zigman, F. Krausz, <a href="" target="_blank">»Field-resolved infrared spectroscopy of biological systems«</a> (Nature 577, 52-59 (2020))<br /> [2] N. Lilienfein, C. Hofer, S. Holzberger, C. Matzer, P. Zimmermann, M. Trubetskov, V. Pervak, I. Pupeza, <a href="" target="_blank">»Enhancement cavities for few-cycle pulses«</a> (Optics Letters 42, 271 (2017)<br /> [3] N. Lilienfein, C. Hofer, T. Saule, M. Högner, M. Trubetskov, V. Pervak, E. Fill, C. Riek, A. Leitenstorfer, J. Limpert, F. Krausz, I. Pupeza, <a href="" target="_blank">»Temporal solitons in free-space femtosecond enhancement cavities«</a> (Nature Photonics 13, 214 (2019))

  • March 12, 2020

    press release — Our recently published paper “Field-resolved infrared spectroscopy of biological systems” [1] has been highlighted in a News &amp; Views article by Andreas Barth [2]. <br />Read it here: <a href=""></a> <br /> [1] I. Pupeza, M. Huber, M. Trubetskov, W. Schweinberger, S.A. Hussain, C. Hofer, K. Fritsch, M. Poetzlberger, L. Vamos, E. Fill, T. Amotchkina, K.V. Kepesidis, A. Apolonski, N. Karpowicz, V. Pervak, O. Pronin, F. Fleischmann, A. Azzeer, M. Zigman, F. Krausz, »Field-resolved infrared spectroscopy of biological systems,« Nature 577, 52-59 (2020)<br /> [2] A. Barth, »Infrared spectroscopy finally sees the light,« Nature 577, 34-35 (2020)<br /> Figure and text reproduced from Nature News &amp; Views by A. Barth [2]: A fresh approach for obtaining infrared spectra. a, In conventional infrared spectroscopy, molecules are irradiated with infrared light. They absorb certain frequencies of the light, which causes them to vibrate. The signals of interest are the absorption ‘troughs’ in the transmitted light spectrum, but these change the overall intensity of the transmitted light only marginally when the samples are highly diluted, limiting the sensitivity of this technique. b, Pupeza et al. [1] irradiate analytical samples with ultrashort bursts of infrared light, again causing molecules in the sample to vibrate. These vibrations continue after the pulse has ended, and generate infrared radiation, shown here as a ‘tail’ that trails after the pulse. This tail is analysed to determine the infrared spectrum of the molecules. Because the experimental signal is emitted light and is detected directly, this method can be more sensitive than absorption infrared spectroscopy.

  • February 20, 2020

    short report — We congratulate Dr. Michael Trubetskov with three main prizes at the design contest held in the frame of Optical Interference Coatings which is the most scientifical event in the field of thin film optics. The conference is hold once in three years by the Optical Society of America.

  • February 17, 2020

    short report — To ensure that samples of plasma and serum obtained in the course of the Lasers4Life (L4L) project can be stored under optimal conditions, the BIRD Group recently took delivery of an automated refrigeration system designed for use at liquid-nitrogen temperatures. The new Biobank was installed in BIRD’s own laboratory at LEX Photonics, which minimizes the interval between sample recovery and laser analysis. The consignment, which was delivered on six pallets, consisted of the necessary components and peripherals, as well as a workbench specifically designed for the handling of frozen samples in the laboratory. Deployment of the various components of the new system required the help of a crane.<p>Askion’s Hermetic Storage HS200S system is capable of storing approximately 60,000 samples at temperatures below -150°C. Under these ‘cryogenic’ conditions, samples can be kept for 10 or more years without qualitative deterioration.</p><p>In order to maintain the cold chain even during the storage and removal of the samples, the HS200S is equipped with a robotic arm that can perform these tasks at a temperature of approximately -110°C. The dedicated workbench mentioned above facilitates the manipulation of samples at and below these temperatures, and it also provides for the automated freezing of samples in accordance with predetermined temperature profiles. </p>

  • February 14, 2020

    press release — Controlling, shaping, and measuring the electric field of light at sub-cycle regime enhances the depth of our insight into microscopic ultrafast dynamics at femtosecond and attosecond time scale. Our developed laser architecture fulfills these criteria. On the one hand, the system allows to generate optimized, non-sinusoidal pulses with scalable peak and average-power for attosecond pulse generation. On the other hand, the system enabled us to detect the electric field of the absorbed light by water molecules at near infrared spectral range for the first time. The demonstrated control and measurement of the electric field of light at petahertz holds promise to open up new opportunities for precise observation and control of molecular vibrations over the entire molecular fingerprint region down to a few femtosecond time scales.

  • February 10, 2020

    press release — Powerful and effective numerical methods are required for designing optical coatings. A new family of design algorithms, so called deep search methods has now been developed by the AMP group of the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics. The methods now provide better design solutions for complicated design problems, first of all of laser-related coatings operating in broadband visible, near-infrared, and mid-infrared spectral ranges. <br /> Abstract: Many existing well-known multilayer design methods are based on so-called greedy algorithms. New deep search algorithms developed for needle optimization, gradual evolution, and design cleaner methods are presented. The algorithms possess machine learning features. The advantages of the deep search methods are demonstrated on a set of examples including the OIC Design Contest 2019.<br /> <b>Original publication:</b><br /> M. Trubetskov: <a href="" target="_blank">»Deep search methods for multilayer coating design« </a>Applied Optics 59, A75 (2020)

  • February 10, 2020

    press release — In the frame of collaboration with the group headed by Dr. Martin Schultze, the AMO-group of the Laboratory of Attosecond Physics developed a new laser application of metal-dielectric coatings. By carefully tuning the thickness of the dielectric overcoating, a broad-band phase-shifting metal-dielectric mirror for visible light is demonstrated. Opposed to available achromatic wave plates, which consist of multiple transmissive birefringent plates and therefore often introduce group delay dispersion on the order of multiple tens to hundreds of fs<sup>2</sup>, the novel optics acts as a quarter-wave plate without introducing group delay dispersion due to its reflective nature. Its capabilities are demonstrated by turning linearly polarized, few-cycle, near-octave spanning visible laser pulses into nearly circularly polarized waveforms without additional dispersion compensation. The mirrors were produced at the Laboratory of Attosecond Physics (AMO group). Ellipsometric measurements were performed by our collaborators from Ruder Boškovic Institute (Zagreb, Croatia). These measurements as well as spectral photometric measurements performed in the AMO group allowed us to carefully characterize Ag and thin Al<sub>2</sub>O<sub>3</sub> films. The mirrors were implemented to the laser setup. <br /> Metal–dielectric phase-shifting multilayer optical elements have been developed, providing broadband, virtually dispersion-free polarization manipulation down to the few-cycle level. These optical elements are Ag/Al<sub>2</sub>O<sub>3</sub> mirrors that operate in the spectral range from 500 to 100 nm, exhibiting reflectance higher than 95%, and a differential phase shift between the s- and p-polarization of about 90° distributed over four bounces. The mirrors have been designed, produced, and reliably characterized based on spectral photometric and ellipsometric data using a non-parametric approach as well as a multi-oscillator model. The optical elements were implemented into a few-cycle laser system, where they transformed linearly polarized few-cycle light pulses to circular polarization.<br /> <b>Original publication</b>: <a href="" target="_blank">»Broadband phase-shifting mirrors for ultrafast lasers« </a>(Applied Optics 59, A123 (2020))

  • February 6, 2020

    press release — First steps have been made towards a new light source for ultra-broadband laser pulses in the mid-IR spectral range. A high-power (200 W, 2 mJ) nonlinear thin-disk amplifier serves as a source for 200 fs pulses which are subsequently broadened and compressed to 40 fs in a multi-pass gas cell using the nonlinear effect of self-phase modulation (SPM). The last stage of pulse shortening consists of a high-power argon-filled hollow-core fiber, which has been added to the system recently and is now able to produce a spectral bandwidth of more than 200 nm supporting pulse durations of less than 10 fs. Subsequent conversion of these pulses to the mid-IR using difference frequency generation (DFG) will allow for CEP-stable pulses for attosecond pulse generation. <br /> Image descr.: High-power hollow-core fiber in operation

  • January 30, 2020

    short report — The LAP team has achieved the first directly diode-pumped Kerr-lens mode-locked Cr<sub>2</sub>+-doped II-VI oscillator capable of providing average output powers over 500 mW using a single-emitter diode as the pump source. This development will dramatically reduce the cost — by over 5 times — over existing fiber laser technologies available today.<br /> The results of the project were presented at the CLEO conference during 2019’s Laser World of Photonics in Munich, and have recently been published in the journal Optics Express<sup>1, 2</sup> . <br /> »With this new class of cost-effective and table-top driver for mid-infrared generation, we have taken a crucial step in providing a more accessible alternative to synchrotron-like infrared radiation,« emphasized Nathalie Nagl, the lead author of the latest publication.<br /> Accessible mid-infrared (MIR) sources are vital to advancing the numerous promising spectroscopic techniques, such as field-resolved spectroscopy that is also being developed at the LAP. Coherent light in the MIR, also known as the molecular »fingerprint region«, can be used to measure biological samples at unprecedented sensitivities for the early detection of illnesses. With the Lasers4Life project, the LAP team is already involved in one of the largest international clinical trials of infrared spectroscopy for the early detection of cancer.<br /> The performance of the team’s solution rivals larger, more costly fiber-pumped oscillators by yielding 2.5-times the peak power compared to previous Cr:ZnSe oscillators while still delivering outstanding low-noise performance. The researchers now aim to improve the performance further by shortening the pulse duration and scaling the output power to even higher levels.<br /> 1. <a href=""></a><br /> 2. <a href=""></a><br /> Profile: <br /> Nathalie Nagl, 26, received her Bachelor Degree in Physics from the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich in 2015, followed by her Master Degree from the same university in 2017. Her Master project, in the LAP team, focused on the nonlinear spectral broadening and characterization of femtosecond pulses from a Cr:ZnS laser oscillator. She continued her work as a doctoral student and is a member of the International Max Planck Research School of Advanced Photon Science. She has also been awarded a doctoral scholarship by the Bischöfliche Studienförderung Cusanuswerk. Nathalie is now working on the further development of diode-pumped Cr:ZnS/ZnSe laser systems, which will serve as the next-generation driver for spectroscopic applications performed in-house.

  • January 2, 2020

    press release — In cooperation between the Laboratory of Attosecond Physics at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics and the Centre for Advanced Laser Applications of the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, the King Saud University Riad and the Center for Molecular Fingerprinting (Budapest, Hungary), we have developed a molecular spectroscopy technique that overcomes long-standing limitations of traditional techniques, like Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy. A powerful femtosecond laser delivers 28 million pulses per second, with highly repeatable waveforms, comprising merely a few infrared-electric-field oscillations. Transmitting these pulses through a complex, molecular sample synchronously excites infrared-active vibrations of molecular bonds, each at its own eigenfrequency. The signals emitted by the vibrationally-excited molecules in the wake of the impulsive excitation coherently add up to a ‘molecular fingerprint’ characteristic of the sample’s molecular composition. <br /> In contrast to traditional spectroscopies, where the entire response of the sample to an infrared excitation hits the detector(s), in field-resolved spectroscopy sub-optical-cycle portions of the time-domain fingerprint field are sequentially carved out by means of nonlinear optics. This dramatically reduces any infrared background on the measured signals, including the noise originating from the excitation and thermal background. This conceptional advance results in an unprecedented detection sensitivity and dynamic range. We have also demonstrated first biological applications that have so far been beyond the reach of infrared vibrational spectroscopies. These applications include first high-signal-to-noise ratio infrared transmission measurements of living biological tissue and fingerprinting of liquid biopsies with sub-µg/ml sensitivity. Thus, field-resolved spectroscopy promises improved molecular sensitivity and molecular coverage for probing complex, real-world biological and medical settings.

  • December 13, 2019

    short report — Prof. Ferenc Krausz has recieved the honorary membership of the Roland Eötvös Physical Society, Budapest. After receiving the membership the laser physicist of the Ludwig-Maximilians University München and the Max-Planck-Institute of Quantum Optics held an lecture about how attosecond science technologies can in the future contribute to a new way of finding molecules in human biofluids like blood. This may path the way for medical applications to detect diseases by analyzing so called molecular fingerprints with the help of strong laser light pulses.

  • November 25, 2019

    press release — The AMO group as a part of the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics has for the first time designed and produced Complementary pair of dispersive multilayers operating in the 2-4 µm spectral range. The mirrors comprise layers of Si and SiO2 thin-film materials. The pair exhibits unparalleled reflectance exceeding 99.7% and provides a group delay dispersion of (-200) fs<sup>2</sup>. The mirrors can be used in Cr:ZnS/Cr:ZnSe femtosecond lasers and amplifiers.<br /> Our motivation for developing these Complementary pair of dispersive multilayers was the fact that Novel 2.4-µm chromium doped zinc sulfide (Cr:ZnS) high-power lasers are being developed at the Laboratory of Attosecond Physics. The lasers will extend laser output to 3.2 µm. Dispersive mirrors are key elements of these lasers. In order design and produce dispersive mirrors suitable for the spectral region 2-4 µm, Si/SiO<sub>2</sub> materials pair was proposed. The combination Si/SiO<sub>2</sub> exhibits a high refractive index ratio and allows one to produce broadband dispersive mirrors.<br /> <b>Original publication:</b><a href="" target="_blank">»Complementary Si/SiO<sub>2</sub> dispersive mirrors for 2-4 µm spectral range«</a> (Optics Express 27, 34901 (2019))

  • November 1, 2019

    press release — For the first time the AMO-group oft he Laboratory of Attosecond Physics developed Broadband dispersive mirrors operating in the mid-infrared spectral range 6.5-11.5 µm. The team was motivated by the fact, that the key elements of the Field-Resolved Spectroscopy are powerful coherent ultrashort infrared pulses exciting molecular vibrations. The shorter the pulse, the better is the separation of the temporal fingerprint specific for the molecules in the sample from the non-resonant part of the response. To obtain such short pulses in mid-infrared range, broadband dispersive mirrors compensating GD/GDD accumulated in the ZnSe windows of the liquid cells as well as additional phase modulation in the system.<br /> <b>Abstract of the paper:</b> Broadband dispersive mirrors operating in the mid-infrared spectral range 6.5-11.5 µm are developed for the first time. The mirrors comprise Ge and YbF<sub>3</sub> layers which have not been used before for manufacturing of multilayer dispersive optics. The design and production processes are described; mechanical stresses of the coatings are estimated based on experimental data; spectral and phase properties of the produced mirrors are measured. The mirrors compensate group delay dispersion of ultrashort laser pulses accumulated by propagation through 4 mm-ZnSe windows and additional residual phase modulation of an ultrashort laser pulse.<br /> <b>Original publication:</b> <a href="" target="_blank">»Broadband dispersive Ge/YbF<sub>3</sub> mirrors for mid-infrared spectral range« </a> (Optics Letters 44, 5210 (2019))

  • August 23, 2019

    short report — AMO group will give an invited talk on Advance Solid State Lasers Conference in Vienna, Austria. Dr. Vladimir Pervak, member of the Laboratory of Attosecond Physics (LAP) at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU), will speak about new developed NIR-MIR mirrors. The talk has the title &quot;Octave spanning dispersive mirror in NIR and MIR&quot;. Date: Tuesday, October 1st, at 2:00 PM - 2:30 PM. We are looking forward to see you there. <p>More information: <a data-htmlarea-external="1" title="Opens internal link in current window" class="external-link-new-window" href=""></a></p>

  • August 5, 2019

    short report — For Hadil it’s a dream come true. She is now directly involved in the development of a new optical amplifier, which will generate pulses of laser light with higher energies than have been attainable up to now. But her path to a PhD project at the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics was anything but straightforward. Hadil is a thoughtful and reflective person, who has succeeded against all the odds in retaining her optimism. Hadil was born and raised in the Syrian city of Aleppo, and studied electronic engineering there. “I had long dreamt of doing a Master’s thesis abroad, because opportunities to carry out research in Syria are very limited,” she says. But she also understood that her wish to study abroad would be difficult to realize. She was reminded again and again that just obtaining a visa would be almost impossible. “During my BSc studies I had become fascinated with photonics, but there are no specialist courses in photonics available in Syria,” she explains. Despite of these obstacles, photonics always remained at the back of her mind.<p> Her decision to focus on natural science in her last years in high school was already linked to the intention to learn skills that would be useful to society. And her subsequent choice of electronic engineering at university was also largely the outcome of rational consideration. For a Bachelor’s degree in Electronic Engineering would open up a range of options for a Master’s thesis and provide access to many professional careers. Her boyfriend, whom she had met at university, had by this time obtained a job as an electronic engineer in Riyadh, the capital of Saudi-Arabia. When war broke out in Syria in 2011, and life in Aleppo became more and more hazardous, Hadil moved to Riyadh to join him in the end of 2012. Once she arrived in Saudi Arabia, they married “I wanted to work in science,” she says. But owing to the segregation of the sexes, the restricted role of women in the public sphere and the preferential allocation of university places to Saudis, she was unable to find anything suitable. She ended up teaching children in mathematics and physics. Indeed, apart from the odd trip to a shopping centre, the taxi rides to the homes of her pupils were the only times she was able to leave her apartment. “I was not at all happy with this situation,” she recalls.</p><p> Under these circumstances, it’s no wonder that her still unrealized dream was revived. The vague notion of ‘abroad’ became more concrete, and she decided she would try to go to Germany. “The Master’s programs here are very good, and the focus on photonics and laser sciences means that the prospects of getting an interesting job in the field are very promising,” she says. In recent years, it has become particularly difficult for Syrians to obtain a visa. To demonstrate her personal commitment, Hadil learned German for a year, but she applied for admission to Master’s programs at universities in Canada and Germany. She ultimately chose to enroll in the Master’s Program in Advanced Optical Technologies at the Friedrich-Alexander University (FAU) in Erlangen-Nürnberg and obtained the vital visa. Once settled in, she began to explore the foothills of the Allgäu and the foothills of the Alps. In the meantime, Hadil wants to expand the radius. I want to see all of the Alps! I love the Alpine landscape.</p><p>In the course of her Master’s project on optical amplifiers, she worked for Dausinger + Giesen in Stuttgart on a system that is based on thin-disk laser technology, and her subsequent application for a doctoral fellowship in the Thin-Disk Laser Technology Group led by Professor Ferenc Krausz was successful. Hadil has now been at the MPQ since June, and is now working on an amplifier that will further enhance the energy of pulsed laser light without compromising pulse duration, repetition rate or beam quality.</p><p> Hadil’s parents have always supported her, not only in her wish to study science and her decision to go abroad to further her career. Above all they are in agreement with her desire to choose her own way of life. Her mother was a schoolteacher and continued to do so after the births of her children. Hadil herself rejects the notion of the subservient role of women that remains dominant in Syrian society. “It is still the case that most female graduates marry and start families as soon as they have their Bachelor’s degree.” But she emphatically rejects this view: “I find it much easier to identify with the high degree of equality accorded to women in Germany,” she says. During her own university career, about one-fifth of her fellow-students were women, both in Aleppo and at the FAU. – And she never experienced any discrimination at either university. The differences that stuck her most lay in the superior standard of laboratory facilities in Germany. She very much appreciates the opportunities she has here, and she does not want to go into detail concerning the instances of discrimination she has experienced as an Arab in Germany. After all, there is discrimination everywhere, including Syria, she remarks.</p><p> Hadil finds it much more important to improve her knowledge of German. In addition, she greatly enjoys cooking and is interested in classical music. If ever she finds the time, she would love to learn to play the cello. She hasn’t had time to think of what will come after her PhD, and is content to wait and see what will turn up. But she would very much like to stay in Bavaria, where there are lots of opportunities in laser physics and in the business sector. Apart from such considerations, after her experiences in war-torn Aleppo and her unhappy time in Saudi Arabia, she has found a huge sense of freedom in her new home: “Bavaria will always be in my heart,” she says. </p>

  • July 31, 2019

    short report — The HFS group and their colleagues were awarded with the prize “Rising stars of light” on the Light Conference 2019 in Changchun, China. The team was honoured with the second prize for their outstanding presentation of their work “Mode-locking beyond the emission bandwith limit”.

  • July 23, 2019

    press release — Our knowledge of how electrons behave in atoms and molecules is steadily increasing. This is largely due to the advances in attosecond physics that have taken place over the past two decades. Professor Ferenc Krausz was one of the pioneers in this young field. Indeed, he was the first to break into the attosecond domain, generating pulses of light with sub-femtosecond durations in 2001. Such ultrashort flashes can be used to study the ultrafast dynamics of electrons within atoms. Krausz has now published a book that traces the development of attosecond physics.

  • July 15, 2019

    press release — The researchers and technicians involved in the Lasers4Life Project (L4L) recently welcomed a new member to the team. Since March, a pipetting robot has taken on the task of processing blood samples for subsequent analysis with an infrared laser. The outcome of such an analysis is a ‘molecular fingerprint’ of the metabolic products present in the sample, which are expected to differ between healthy donors and patients who are ill. Based on these differences, L4L researchers hope to develop a new analytical test for the early diagnosis of cancers.

  • July 1, 2019

    short report — AMO group has actively participated at the Optical Interference Coatings 2019 Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA, 02-07 June 2019. Since forty years, the OIC conference has been serving as the main world-leading conference in the field of optical interference coatings. The group presented three oral presentations. The first one dealt with Laser-Related Broadband Dichroic Filters Based on Ge/YbF3 and ZnS/YbF3 Thin-Film Materials. The second one was held about Broadband Phase-Shifting Mirrors for Ultrafast Lasers. And the third one broached the issue of Broadband Si/SiO2 Dispersive Mirrors For Ultrafast Mid-Infrared Lasers. In addition, Dr. Vladimir Pervak was a co-organizer of the design contest and give a short course on Sunday afternoon in the frame of the OIC Conference. He had an invited talk &quot;Results of the OIC 2019 Design Problem Contest&quot; Internet: <a href="" target="_blanc"></a>

  • February 21, 2019

    press release — <div>Researchers at the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics in Garching have built the first-ever laser-driven particle accelerator that can generate pairs of electron beams with different energies.</div><div></div>

  • November 12, 2018

    short report — At the beginning of October Dr. Frank Fleischmann joined the Broadband Infrared Diagnostics (BIRD) team led by Dr. Mihaela Zigman. Fleischmann began his career in biology as a botanist, but later switched to medical research. Before taking up his present position as a member of the BIRD team, he worked for a commercial provider of genetic tests, including the genotyping of cancer patients, for example. Fleischmann’s role in the BIRD team is akin to that of an archivist. He is responsible for the cataloging and storage of blood samples. Needless to say, accurate documentation and painstaking handling of test samples are of fundamental importance in medical research. After all, its ultimate goal is to produce a therapeutic agent or procedure that will be used to treat real patients every day. Fleischmann is also in charge of the database specially developed for the Lasers4Life project, and meticulously documents everything done with each and every one of the vital samples in his care. At the moment, the samples of blood plasma and the sera obtained from them are being stored at a temperature of −80°C. However, even this temperature is not low enough for long-term storage of such samples, as slow ice recrystallization alters their consistency, and after a certain time they have to be discarded. Fleischmann is working on an automated cooling system based on liquid nitrogen as the refrigerant, which will allow the samples to be kept at temperatures as low as −180°C. This is sufficiently cold to inhibit ice recrystallization in the liquid – and under these conditions, the constituents of the various blood fractions will remain unchanged for decades. Thus, as even more advanced methods of laser spectroscopy are developed in the future, the new system will enable the BIRD team to re-examine the samples already collected.

  • October 31, 2018

    short report — The LAP team warmly congratulates Arthur Ashkin, Gérard Mourou and Donna Strickland on winning the 2018 Physics Nobel Prize! Our colleagues are being honored for their ground-breaking inventions in laser physics. Arthur Ashkin is being awarded the prize for the development of optical tweezers and its application in biological systems and Gérard Mourou and Donna Strickland for their method of producing ultra-short, high-intensity optical pulses. The latter is a technique that we use daily and are developing further in our laboratories. Ultra-short pulse laser physics represents a focal point of our research and we are honored that such importance is being attached to this area of expertise.

  • October 22, 2018

    short report — Nathalie Nagl has been awarded a doctoral scholarship by the Bischöfliche Studienförderung Cusanuswerk. She has already written her master’s thesis in Dr. Oleg Pronin’s group in the LAP team and can now continue her work as a doctoral student. Nathalie is working on a new, pulsed laser light source that emits near-infrared radiation. It uses a Cr:ZnSe crystal as a laser medium, as well as novel diodes, which are needed to pump the crystal. The system is designed to detect specific molecules in biological samples. The molecules that researchers are interested in are often very weakly concentrated and thus difficult to find. For this reason, the laser source used must produce as little noise as possible and send out extreme strong light at very specific frequencies.&nbsp; Molecules each react only to a well-defined frequency of light. Nathalie now wants to push the laser deeper into the infrared range. This could make it possible to detect an even wider range of molecules.

  • August 20, 2018

    short report — Junior researchers at LMU Munich are also actively involved in the Lasers4Life project. One of them is Maša Bozič. As part of her Master’s project, she is using visible light to analyse blood samples, before they are examined with the newly developed near-infrared laser.

  • July 12, 2018

    short report — An Important visitor made an appearance at the Center for Advanced Laser Applications and the Laboratory for Extreme Photonics last Friday. Dr. László Palkovics, Minister for Innovation and Technology was on the research campus in Garching and visited the two laser research facilities at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität. While there, he received a tour of the large laser systems in the laboratories from Professor Ferenc Krausz and Dr. Andreas Döpp. The minister was particularly impressed by the enormous developments that laser technology has made in recent years and the associated opportunities for their use in medicine. Of particular interest for him, was the BIRD project and its blood analysis using laser light. Collaboration with clinics in Hungary in the framework of the project is currently being planned.

  • July 3, 2018

    short report — The Laboratory of Attosecond Physics (LAP) at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics and the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität is hosting guests from Saudi Arabia this summer. For one month Abdullah Ali Alshehri, Ibrahim Abdullah Almuhanna, Rayan Khalid Alzahrani, Lamyaa Alasim and Saleha Mansour Alshalwi will be completing the Summer School for Quantum Optics in the LAP team’s research groups. All five participants are studying physics. The summer school is a joint project of the LAP team and the King Saud University in Riyadh. At the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, the students will work in the laboratories, as well as attend lectures and round table discussions with senior scientists. We wish them a successful and eventful stay here!

  • June 22, 2018

    short report — IMPRS-APS offers young researchers a unique combination of education and training opportunities in the physics and technology of photon sources and their advanced application in physics, chemistry and biology.<br /> This year´s application round will be open until July 30th, 2018.

  • June 14, 2018

    short report — A blood donation campaign will be organized on the 14th and 15th of June, 2018 within the framework of the »Lasers 4 Life« project. Please take part!<br /> For more information, visit: <a href=""></a>

  • June 8, 2018

    short report — Dr. Hanieh Fattahi was selected as the member of the Elisabeth-Schiemann-Kolleg of the Max Planck Society. &quot;You are one of the new excellent scientists selected by the members of the Kolleg,&quot; writes Director and Speaker of the Elisabeth Schiemann Kolleg Prof. Dr. Katharina Landfester.

  • June 8, 2018

    short report — Dr. Hanieh Fattahi was selected as the member of the Elisabeth-Schiemann-Kolleg of the Max Planck Society. &quot;You are one of the new excellent scientists selected by the members of the Kolleg,&quot; writes Director and Speaker of the Elisabeth Schiemann Kolleg Prof. Dr. Katharina Landfester.

  • May 17, 2018

    short report — Our group presented two invited talks at the recent SPIE Conference »Optical Systems Design«, Frankfurt am Main, 14-17 May 2018 &lt;br&gt;1. Tatiana Amotchkina, Michael Trubetskov, Vladimir Pervak, Optical and mechanical properties of layers typically used in the mid-infrared spectral range (the talk was given by Tatiana Amotchkina).<br /> 2. Vladimir Pervak, Michael Trubetskov, Tatiana Amotchkina, Oleg Pronin, Ka Fai Mak and Ferenc Krausz, Broadband Si/SiO<sub>2</sub> dispersive mirrors for the 2-3.2 µm spectral range (the talk was given by Vladimir Pervak).

  • April 23, 2018

    press release — Molecules are the building blocks of life. Like all other organisms, we are made of them. They control our biorhythm, and they can also reflect our state of health. Researchers at the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (LAP) – a joint venture between Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU) and the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (MPQ) in Garching near Munich – want to use brilliant infrared light to study molecular disease markers in much greater detail, for example to facilitate early stage cancer diagnosis. The team has developed a powerful femtosecond light source which emits at wavelengths between 1.6 and 10.2 micrometers. This instrument should make it possible to detect organic molecules present in extremely low concentrations in blood or aspirated air.

  • April 17, 2018

    press release — Researchers from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU), the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (MPQ) and the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have taken a major step towards the clinical application of a new laser-based source of X-rays. They recently demonstrated that the instrument enables the tomographic reconstruction of the three-dimensional fine structure of a bone sample within a few minutes. Up to now, laser-based measurements of this sort took several hours. The breakthrough was made possible by the further development of ATLAS, the high-performance laser in LMU’s Laboratory for Extreme Photonics (LEX Photonics) der LMU on the Research Campus in Garching. Reconstruction of the sample from the imaging data was also facilitated by the use of specially designed computer programmes.

  • April 12, 2018

    press release — Physicists can now control light in both time and space with hitherto unimagined precision. This is particularly true for the ability to generate ultrashort light pulses in the infrared and visible regions of the spectrum. Extremely high-energy laser pulses, each lasting for a few femtoseconds, have made spectacular experiments possible, which have in turn yielded revolutionary insights. Above all, the growth in understanding of the interaction between light and electrons opens up entirely new prospects for the future of electronics. In the journal Review of Modern Physics (10 April 2018), Dr. Stanislav Kruchinin, Prof. Ferenc Krausz and Dr. Vladislav Yakovlev from the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (which is jointly run by Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU) and the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (MPQ)) in Munich, provide a timely overview of current research in ultrafast solid-state physics. They describe recent breakthroughs and take a look at what we can expect from the field in the coming years.

  • April 9, 2018

    graduation — The PhD title is &quot;A new generation of high-power, waveform controlled, few-cycle light sources&quot;.

  • March 26, 2018

    short report — For the first time, broadband infrared dispersive mirrors exhibiting reflectance exceeding 99.6% and providing group-delay dispersion of -100 fs<sup>2</sup> and -200 fs<sup>2</sup> in the spectral range from 2 to 3.2 µm have been designed and produced in our group. The dispersive mirrors, based on Si/SiO<sub>2</sub> thin-film materials, are key optical elements for mode-locked Cr:ZnS and Cr:ZnSe oscillators and pave the way for the development of ultrafast optics operating in the mid-infrared spectral range.