Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics

Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics

Research in AMO physics has a long history--from building the foundations of quantum mechanics to continuing today at the cutting edge of science. The development of AMO physics is fueled by revolutionary advances in our ability to use light to manipulate, control and measure the properties of atoms and molecules.

As such, the signature scientific achievements in AMO physics are the developments of enabling experimental methodologies, and the application of these methodologies to Nobel-prize winning discoveries and to developing scientific knowledge in areas that extend across all of physics and other scientific disciplines including biology and chemistry. 

Research opportunities in atomic, molecular and optical physics span a broad spectrum of topics, from the making of precision measurements of fundamental constants of nature to the measurements of parity violating effects in atoms. Other exciting areas in AMO physics are quantum optics; laser cooling and atom trapping; atom interferometers; the search for the electric dipole moment of the electron; the search for dark matter; studies of the consequences of Bose-Einstein condensation; generation and application of ultra-short pulses of x-rays; quantum computing and information processing; antimatter research; the exploration of the fundamental properties of gravity; and the spectroscopy novel molecules and solid state systems. Atomic physics techniques are also exploited in experiments focusing on fundamental issues in particle and nuclear physics, as well as condensed matter physics.

Physics Faculty

Experimentalists

Dmitry Budker

Professor

Biography

Dmitry Budker received his Ph.D. in physics from UC Berkeley in 1993 and was a postdoctoral researcher at the University until his faculty appointment in 1995.

Research Interests

Budker’s research interests are related to the study of violation of discrete symmetries – parity, time reversal invariance, and permutation symmetry for identical particles - using the methods of modern atomic physics.

Eugene Commins (E)

Professor Emeritus

Biography

Eugene D. Commins received his Ph.D. from Columbia University in 1958. Member, National Academy of Sciences; Fellow: American Academy of Arts and Sciences, A.A.A.S., A.P.S. Berkeley Campus Distinguished Teaching Awards 1963, 1979.

Research Interests

Current Projects

Eric Corsini

Lecturer

Biography

PhD from UC Berkeley

Roger Falcone

ProfessorDirector, Advanced Light Source, LBNL

Biography

Roger W. Falcone joined the UC Berkeley Physics faculty in 1983; Physics Department Chair 1995-2000; A.B. Princeton (1974); Ph.D.

Research Interests

My group is interested in the coherent control of the structure of matter by the use of ultrashort pulses of laser radiation.

Naomi Ginsberg

Assistant Professor

Biography

Naomi S. Ginsberg received a B.A.Sc. degree in Engineering Science from the University of Toronto in 2000 and a Ph.D. in Physics from Harvard University in 2007. She held a Glenn T.

Research Interests

Work in the Ginsberg Group is motivated by the need to spatially and temporally resolve the complex dynamics of nanoscale processes, such as photosynthetic light harvesting.

Hartmut Häffner

The Mike Gyorgy Assistant Professor

Biography

Hartmut Häffner received his PhD in physics from the University of Mainz / Germany in 2000.

Research Interests

My main research interests focus on trapped ions to get a deeper understanding of quantum mechanics. Using laser light, strings of ions trapped with electrodynamical forces can be cooled to their motional ground state.

Stephen Leone

ProfessorThe John R. Thomas Professor in PhysicsDirector, Chemical Dynamics Beamline, LBNL

Biography

Dr. Leone received his B.A. in Chemistry at Northwestern University in 1970 and his Ph.D. in Chemistry at the University of California at Berkeley with Professor C. Bradley Moore in 1974. He was an assistant professor at the University of Southern California from 1974-76.

Research Interests

Professor Leone's research interests include ultrafast laser investigations and soft x-ray probing of valence and core levels, attosecond physics and chemistry, state-resolved collision processes and kinetics investigations, nanoparticle fluorescence intermittency, aerosol chemistry and dynamics,

Richard Marrus (E)

Professor Emeritus

Biography

Richard Marrus received his B.S. from New York University in 1954, and his Ph.D. from UC Berkeley in 1959. He served as a post-doc and then as a staff scientist at Lawrence Berkeley Lab until 1963.

Research Interests

My main research interest at present is in the spectroscopy of one- and two-electron ions at very high atomic number. This research is conducted mainly at accelerators located in Europe (GANIL accelerator in Caen, France and the SIS accelerator in Darmstadt, Germany).

Holger Müller

Assistant Professor

Biography

Holger Müller successfully applied for his first patent when he was 14. Later, he did his undergraduate thesis with Jürgen Mlynek at the University of Konstanz, Germany. He graduated from Humboldt-University, Berlin, with Achim Peters as advisor.

Research Interests

The basic premise of my work is that precision measurements of fundamental quantities can help to address the great challenges faced by physicists now – for example, how we can find and verify a theory beyond the standard model of particle physics that might eventually unify gravity and quantum m

Charles Schwartz (E)

Professor Emeritus

Biography

Research: Atomic, Molecular And Optical Physics

Dan Stamper-Kurn

Associate Professor

Biography

Dan M. Stamper-Kurn came to Berkeley following his studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Ph.D. 2000) and postdoctoral work at the California Institute of Technology (1999 – 2001).

Research Interests

The developing field of ultracold atomic physics provides tantalizing opportunities for exploring physical phenomena in a regime that has heretofore been inaccessible: material systems with temperatures in the nanokelvin range (and below), with broadly and instantly tunable interactions, residing

Lukman Winoto

Lecturer

Biography

Lukman Winoto received his Ph.D. in physics from UC Berkeley in 1999.