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The Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award to Anne L’Huillier

Anne L’Huillier. Photo: Kennet Ruona
Anne L’Huillier, Professor of Atom Physics and member of NanoLund, is awarded the Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award. Photo: Kennet Ruona

In memory of the nuclear physicist Lise Meitner, the Gothenburg Physics Centre since 2006 awards a prize to a scientist who made a breakthrough discovery in physics. Next week, Anne L’Huillier is given the prize at a ceremony in Gothenburg.

The Gothenburg Physics Centre proudly presents Anne L’Huillier as the laureate of the Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award 2020. Anne L’Huillier, professor of Atom Physics, receives the prize “for pioneering contributions to attosecond laser science and technology.” 

The award ceremony for The Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award winners of 2020 and 2021 will take place on September 8, 2022, followed by symposia in the honour of the laureates on September 9.

Professor L'Huillier has been at the forefront of ultrafast laser science since its inception, with her pioneering contributions to high-order harmonic light generation, which is a base technology for attosecond science. Her research has helped foster the field of attosecond science, allowing scientists to visualize the movements of electrons in light-induced processes, which can be used to understand chemical reactions on the atomic level.

Lise Meitner was a researcher in Berlin from 1907 to 1938, when she was forced to flee to Sweden, where she came to work for 20 years. As a woman she was initially not allowed in the laboratories where men worked and later she had a hard time getting a regular academic position. With these qualifications, she was still one of the leading nuclear physicists in the world. After her escape to Sweden, she was the first to understand nuclear fission when she during a stay in Kungälv Christmas in 1938 , along with her nephew Otto Frisch, could explain the results that Otto Hahn, her colleague in Berlin, sent her.

The Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award is not only about awarding well merited physicists, but also to enrich the scientific environment in Gothenburg.

Chalmers writes about the Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award