FIP Distinguished Virtual Seminar "Harnessing Quantum Light Science for Probing Functional Materials"

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Wed, 03/31/2021 - 12:00 to 13:00

Dr. Margaret Murnane


Dr. Margaret Murnane, Professor of Physics, Fellow of JILA, University of Colorado Boulder


X-ray science has undergone a revolution in the past decade. More than 50 years after the demonstration of the visible laser, it is finally possible to routinely generate laser-like beams spanning the extreme ultraviolet to the soft X-ray region. Large- and small-scale coherent X-ray sources, including high harmonic generation (HHG) and X-ray free electron lasers (XFELs) have enabled a broad range of applications. The extreme quantum coherence of high harmonic light sources makes it possible to precisely control x-ray light using visible lasers –– enabling short wavelength waveforms with controlled spectral and temporal shape, polarization state, and beam structure extending into the zeptosecond regime (10-21 s). This talk will also review exciting applications in materials science using tabletop and facility-scale x-ray light sources. Exciting new capabilities include the ability to implement the first near-perfect short wavelength microscopes, or to image the spin texture and topology in materials.

Margaret Murnane is a Fellow of JILA and a Distinguished Professor at the University of Colorado. She runs a joint, multi-disciplinary, research group with her husband, Prof. Henry Kapteyn. She received her B.S and M.S. degrees from University College Cork, Ireland, and her Ph.D. degree from UC Berkeley. Prof. Murnane with her students and collaborators use coherent beams of laser and x-ray light to capture the fastest dynamics in materials at the nanoscale. Margaret is currently serving as the Director of the National Science Foundation STROBE Center on Real Time Functional Imaging.