The 2018 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded to three scientists in the field of laser science: Dr. Arthur Ashkin for his invention of the optical tweezers and their application to biological systems, and Dr. Gérard Mourou and Dr. Donna Strickland for their method of generating highintensity, ultrashort optical pulses. The awards integrate the far reaches of time and intensity scales in laser technologies, from the extremely high-intensity chirped pulse lasers (by Mourou and Strickland) to the ultralow-power beams (by Ashkin) that are capable of handling delicate biological objects and molecules.
Katarzyna Tych is a postdoctoral research fellow at the Technical University of Munich, Munich, Germany. Her research interests include protein biophysics, instrument development, and science communication. She has a Ph.D. degree in electronic engineering from the University of Leeds, Leeds, U.K.