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Attoelectronics: Steering electrons in atoms and molecules with synthesized waveforms of light

Final Report Summary - ATTOELECTRONICS (Attoelectronics: Steering electrons in atoms and molecules with synthesized waveforms of light)

The research project Attoelectronics has put forward the development of novel technologies of laser light manipulation and aimed at extending the state of the art of laser-based control of matter to the electronic time scale; the fastest time scale of motion in the microcosm outside the atomic nucleus. This control and its first applications in ultrafast electronic spectroscopy have indeed comprised the core of our activities in the first reporting period and with remarkable progress.
One of the most essential research and technological highlights of the project accomplished within this first reporting period is the design and implementation of the world’s first light field synthesizer (A Wirth et al. Science 2011). This is an essential milestone for the imaging electron motion and its attosecond control because it establishes the zero time of this dynamic motion which essential for controlling electronic processes on a scale of time from microwave to Petahertz frequencies. In 2015 the group demonstrated that such optical field used to drive electrons in atoms of solids it can allow the generation of extreme ultraviolet radiation for the first time in solid state photonics ( Nature 2015). The technology of light synthesis extended even further to allow the synthesis of the first optical attosecond pulse. Such pulses allowed for the very first time the direct generation and measurement of attosecond, Multi-PHZ currents in solids (Nature 2016).