H.C. Ørsted Lecture

Lene Hau, Harvard University

A videotransmission of the lecture will be broadcast in a neighboring lecture hall.


Quantum control of light and matter - from the macroscopic to the nanoscale

Light pulses are slowed in ultra-cold atom clouds to bicycle speed: 24 km/hour, which is 50 million times lower than the light speed in vacuum. In the process the pulses spatially compress by the same large factor, from 1 km to only 0.02 mm at which point they fit entirely within the atom cloud. A light pulse can then be completely stopped for several milliseconds. In our more recent experiments, we take matters further: We stop and extinguish a light pulse in one part of space and revive it in a completely different location. The experiments create a new paradigm for control and inter-conversion of light and matter....  and the secret behind the trick will be revealed in the talk.


Brief Biography

Lene Vestergaard Hau is the Mallinckrodt Professor of Physics and of Applied Physics at Harvard University. Prior to joining the Harvard faculty in 1999, she was a member of scientific staff at Rowland Institute for Science in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She holds a Ph.D. in physics from the University of Aarhus.


Hau led a team who succeeded in slowing a pulse of light to 17 meters per second and ultimately brought light to a stop. Her formalized training is in theoretical solid state physics and she has worked in the fields of experimental and theoretical optical, atomic, and condensed matter physics. Her research has included studies of ultra-cold atoms and superfluid Bose-Einstein condensates, as well as channeling of high-energy electrons and positrons in single crystals. The latter has involved the development of channeling radiation as a solid state probe of valence-electron and spin-magnetic densities and has included experiments at CERN, Brookhaven, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.


She was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, and the Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters, and is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. She is a recipient of numerous awards, including the MacArthur Genius Award and the Ledlie Prize, Harvard University’s top faculty award, as well as the Ole Roemer Medal, the Rigmor and Carl Holst-Knudsen's 50'th Anniversary Award, and the Richtmyer Memorial Lecture Award.



For more about the Ørsted Lectures, please follow the link below.


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Time: 15:00-17:00
DTU, Lyngby Campus, i bygning 116, auditorie 81
Afd. for Forskning og Innovation

Anker Engelunds Vej 1Bygning 101A2800 Kgs. Lyngby
Tlf. (+45) 4525 1111CVR-nr. 30060946EAN-nr. 5798000430846