WASHINGTON--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--The Optical Society (OSA) and the Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft (DPG) announced that the 2017 Herbert Walther Award will be awarded to experimental physicist Randall Hulet, Rice University, Houston, Texas, USA, for his groundbreaking research and discovery of the Bose-Einstein condensation in an atomic gas with attractive interactions. As the Fayez Sarofim Professor of Physics and Astronomy, Randall Hulet is a pioneer researcher in experimental atomic, molecular and optical (AMO) physics. At the Hulet Lab, Rice University, he leads a team of research students in the study of collision of solitons and the detection of anti-ferromagnetic correlations.
“He was the first to witness the Bose-Einstein condensation in an atomic gas, leading to the discovery of matter-wave solitons and soliton-soliton collisions.”
“Randall is highly regarded for his pioneering methods in photoassociative spectroscopy,” said Elizabeth Rogan, CEO of The Optical Society (OSA). “He was the first to witness the Bose-Einstein condensation in an atomic gas, leading to the discovery of matter-wave solitons and soliton-soliton collisions.”
Randall Hulet, Rice University, said, “I have focused my research on quantum gases, specifically in the field of ultracold atomic physics. New optical technologies continue to drive new discoveries in quantum many-body physics and I am excited about the science that we can do in the future. I am delighted to accept the 2017 Walther Award and thank the award committee for this honor.”
Hulet is best known for his early observation of Bose-Einstein condensation (BEC) in an atomic gas with attractive interactions, for observing the formation and collapse of a condensate and his development of a degenerate Bose-Fermi mixture. In Hulet’s research, he discovered the upper limit on the number of atoms within a condensate and the realization that remnants of a condensate will remain in the gas upon its collapse. His breakthroughs have garnered him multiple awards, in which he is the recipient of the Willis E. Lamb Medal for Laser Science and Quantum Optics (2011), Outstanding Referee for Physical Review and Physical Review Letters (2010), and NASA Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal (2004). Hulet is a Fellow of The Optical Society (OSA), the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences (AAAS) and a Fellow of the American Physical Society (APS). Currently, Hulet is acting Chair-line for APS Division of Atomic Molecular, and Optical Physics. He was acting team leader for DARPA’s Optical Lattice Emulator, which sought to explore the fully quantum mechanical behavior of materials. During his time as team leader for the emulator, Hulet’s team proved it possible to use ultracold atoms and lasers to build the type of structures needed to simulate high-temperature superconductors.
Established in 2007, the Walther Award is named in honor of Dr. Herbert Walther for the seminal influence of his groundbreaking innovations in quantum optics and atomic physics, and for his wide-ranging contributions to the international scientific community. The award is sponsored by DPG and The Optical Society (OSA).
About The Optical Society
Founded in 1916, The Optical Society (OSA) is the leading professional organization for scientists, engineers, students and business leaders who fuel discoveries, shape real-life applications and accelerate achievements in the science of light. Through world-renowned publications, meetings and membership initiatives, OSA provides quality research, inspired interactions and dedicated resources for its extensive global network of optics and photonics experts. For more information, visit osa.org/100.
The German Physical Society (Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft e. V.; DPG), which was founded way back in 1845, is the oldest national and, with about 62,000 members, also the largest physical society in the world. As a non-profit-making organisation it pursues no economic interests. The DPG promotes the transfer of knowledge within the scientific community through conferences, events and publications, and aims to open a window to physics for the curious. Its special focuses are on encouraging junior scientists and promoting equal opportunities. The DPG’s head office is at Bad Honnef am Rhein. Its representative office in the capital is the Magnus-Haus Berlin. Website: www.dpg-physik.de.