Professor Andrea Cavalleri has been awarded the 2018 Frank Isakson Prize for Optical Effects in Solids by the APS. The Frank Isakson Prize is awarded biennially for outstanding optical research which leads to breakthroughs in the condensed matter sciences.
The prize citation quotes Cavalleri’s “pioneering contributions to the development and application of ultra-fast optical spectroscopy to condensed matter systems.” His research, says the APS, is “providing insight into lattice dynamics, structural phase transitions, and the non-equilibrium control of solids”.
Cavalleri’s work involves a combination of intense TeraHertz pulses, used to manipulate the properties of solids, and femtosecond x-rays from Free Electron Lasers, to study their dynamics. This was most vividly demonstrated in his studies of non-equilibrium superconductivity far above the thermodynamic transition temperature.
Cavalleri is founding director of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter in Hamburg, where he leads the Condensed Matter Dynamics Department. He is also a Professor of Physics at the Universities of Hamburg and Oxford and member of the cluster of excellence CUI. Text: MPSD, ed.