Ohio State University researcher earns Nobel Prize

Pierre Agostini, researcher and professor with The Ohio State University, was awarded the Nobel Prize for his achievements studying electrons in dynamic matter. What’s that mean?

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The Ohio State University is a leader on the field, in the classroom, and in the research lab. | Photo via Canva

A new accolade is on The Ohio State University’s shelf, but this time it’s from the research team — not the sports.

Pierre Agostini, a professor at OSU, was awarded the Nobel Prize in physics for his studies in electron dynamics in matter. Unless you also have a Nobel Prize, you are probably wondering what this all means. Here’s the full picture:

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Three total researchers were awarded the Nobel Prize on Tuesday, Oct. 3. | Screenshot via Nobel Prize

In 2001, Prof. Agostini created multiple light pulses that could be measured in attoseconds. Anne L’Huillier began this research in 1987, and Ferenc Krausz made further achievements in 2006. Both earned Nobel Prizes with Agostini.

What’s an attosecond? One-quintillionth of a second, or as the release so eloquently put it: “...an attosecond is so short that there are as many in one second as there have been seconds since the birth of the universe.”

These pulses prove that they can be used to produce images of process inside molecules and atoms. Think: Medical diagnostics.