02 December 2015 Three ICFO studies in “Optics in 2015”

Mechanism of LIED - Pullen et al.

Near-field map measured for two orthogonal polarizations of incident light-Beduini et al.

Fast volumetric imaging using DID-LSFM - Olarte et al.

The Optics & Photonics Magazine highlights 3 ICFO studies in its OPN Year selection Optics & Photonics has recently announced its list of the thirty 2015 highlighted articles of the year in its December issues and this time, ICFO has had the honour to have three studies included in the list of most exciting peer-reviewed optics research to have emerged over the past 12 months.

In the first study, which appears in Nature Communications, ICFO researchers Dr. Michael Pullen, Benjamin Wolter, Matthias Baudisch, and Dr. Michael Hemmer, led by ICREA Prof. at ICFO Dr. Jens Biegert, have developed the recipe to take \'snapshots\' of polyatomic molecular structure at the atomic level and with attosecond temporal resolution. This technique of using a mid-IR laser with a 3D electron and ion coincidence detection system, called laser-induced electron diffraction (LIED), provides an accessible and robust route towards imaging many ultrafast processes in complex molecules with a temporal resolution that was considered impossible only a few years ago. The results set the scene for the first “molecular movie” with simultaneous picometer and few-femtosecond resolutions.

In the second study, which appears in Physical Review Letters, ICFO researchers Dr. Federica A. Beduini, Joanna A. Zielińska, Vito G. Lucivero, Dr. Yannick A. de Icaza Astiz, led by ICREA Prof at ICFO Dr. Morgan Mitchell have detected, for the first time, entanglement among individual photon pairs in a beam of squeezed light. The results they obtained show promising advances for other macroscopic many-body systems and quantum gases such as Bose-Einstein condensates for the future study of superconductivity and superfluidity, optical communications, or the research and development of qubits for quantum computing.

In the third study, which appears in the journal Optica, ICFO researchers Dr. Omar E. Olarte, Dr. Jordi Andilla, Dr. David Artigas, and Dr. Pablo Loza-Alvarez, head of ICFO’s SLN Facility, have reported on a technique that shows how the decoupled illumination-detection (DID) approach can be used to obtain high-resolution volumetric images of fast moving dynamics in living samples as well as for 3-D particle tracking at unprecedented speeds (>70 volumes/s). This results of this work have great implications for fast volumetric imaging in several applications, including calcium dynamics, 3-D cell tracking and particle velocimetry, or even in optogenetics and active neural stimulation.