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Posted: Apr 09, 2012

New era for measuring ultra-fast phenomena: Atto science era

(Nanowerk News) Researchers successfully measured the exact status of the rapidly changing Helium atom using an atto second pulse. Thanks to this discovery, many ultrafast phenomena in nature can now be precisely measured. This will lead to an opening of a new "Atto Science" era.
Prof. Nam Chang Hee led this research team and Ph.d Kim Kyung Taek and Prof. Choi Nak Ryul also participated in this research. They have conducted the research under the support of the Researcher Support Program initiated by The Ministry of Education and Science and Korea Research Foundation. The research result was published in the prestigious journal Physical Review Letters (" Amplitude and Phase Reconstruction of Electron Wave Packets for Probing Ultrafast Photoionization Dynamics").
Prof. Nam Chang Hee's research team used atto second pulse to measure the ultrafast photoionization.
His team used atto second X-ray pulse and femto second laser pulse to photoionize Helium atoms, and measure the wave speed of the produced electron to closely investigate the ultrafast photoionization process.
Atom's photoionization measurement using an atto second pulse was possible using the research team's high-energy femto second laser and high-performance photo ion measurement device. This research team succeeded in producing the shortest 60 atto second pulse in the world using high-harmonic waves.
The research team used high-power femto second laser to produce atto second high-harmonic pulse from argon gas, used this to photoionize Helium atoms, and measured the ultrafast photoionization of the atoms.
Prof. Nam Chang Hee said, "This research precisely measured the exact status of rapidly changing Helium atoms. I am planning to research on measuring the ultrafast phenomena inside atoms and molecules and controlling the status of the atoms and molecules based on the research result."
Source: KAIST
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