Attosecond science

Definition

Attosecond science is the study of processes that occur on a time scale of a few attoseconds (10-18 seconds) or less. Examples include the ionization and recollision of an electron from its parent atom or molecule. The speed of these phenomena means that they can only be investigated using optical techniques employing ultrafast lasers.

Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • News and Views |

    Without a very precise timer one can never catch up with the electron released in photoemission. Attosecond streaking spectroscopy allows such a chronometer clock to be set to zero and reveals the role of electron correlations.

    • Francesca Calegari
    Nature Physics 13, 207–208
  • News and Views |

    A movie of ultrafast electron dynamics driven by lightwaves shows that wide-bandgap semiconductors could form the building blocks of petahertz electronic devices.

    • Oliver D. Mücke
    Nature Physics 12, 724–725
  • News and Views |

    Crossing two focused laser beams with opposite circular polarization makes the production and application of circularly polarized light in the extreme ultraviolet and soft X-ray spectral regions considerably easier and more efficient.

    • Kjeld S. E. Eikema
    Nature Photonics 9, 710–712
  • News and Views |

    The ionization of atoms and molecules by strong laser fields has become a core technique in modern laser physics. Now, the electrons emerging from ionized molecules are shown to exhibit a memory of the ionization process, resulting in a spatial phase that may influence the interpretation of imaging data.

    • Jochen Küpper
    Nature Physics 10, 550–551
  • Comments and Opinion |

    Even for simple systems, the interpretations of new attosecond measurements are complicated and provide only a glimpse of their potential. Nonetheless, the lasting impact will be the revelation of how short-time dynamics can determine the electronic properties of more complex systems.

    • Stephen R. Leone
    • , C. William McCurdy
    • , Joachim Burgdörfer
    • , Lorenz S. Cederbaum
    • , Zenghu Chang
    • , Nirit Dudovich
    • , Johannes Feist
    • , Chris H. Greene
    • , Misha Ivanov
    • , Reinhard Kienberger
    • , Ursula Keller
    • , Matthias F. Kling
    • , Zhi-Heng Loh
    • , Thomas Pfeifer
    • , Adrian N. Pfeiffer
    • , Robin Santra
    • , Kenneth Schafer
    • , Albert Stolow
    • , Uwe Thumm
    •  & Marc J. J. Vrakking
    Nature Photonics 8, 162–166