AC1: News

AC1: News

2016 Young Scientist Prize for Optics (AC1)

Laura Na Liu

“For outstanding contributions to nano-optics, nanophotonics, nanoplasmonics, and metamaterials.”

Laura Na Liu is Professor at the Kirchhoff Institute of Physics, University of Heidelberg, and Group Leader at the Max-Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, Germany. She graduated with a BS in physics from Jilin University, China, and a MS in physics from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. She obtained her PhD in physics with “summa cum laude” from the University of Stuttgart, Germany, in 2009. In 2010, she was post-doc at the Lawrence Berkeley Lab, University of California, Berkeley, USA. In 2011–2012 she was Texas Instruments Visiting Professor at the Electrical Engineering Department of Rice University, Houston, TX, USA. Since 2012, she is the leader of the Smart Nanoplasmonics group at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, Stuttgart, Germany, and in 2015 she became Full Professor at the Kirchhoff Institute of Physics of the University of Heidelberg. Her research group focuses on developing sophisticated and smart plasmonic nanostructures for gaining precise insight into cell biology and catalytic chemistry.

She has received multiple awards: between them a Chinese Government Award for outstanding students abroad in 2008. In 2012, she was awarded the Sofja Kovalevskaja Award of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, which provides young researchers with up to €1.5 million as risk capital for innovative projects at an early stage of their careers. Na Liu proposed to use nanoplasmonics to observe biological and chemical processes at the level of individual particles, by combining gold nanoparticles with DNA and observing the dynamics of chemical reactions with high-resolution microscopes. She was awarded the Elisabeth Schiemann-Kolleg Fellowship of the Max Planck Society and the Heinz Maier-Leibnitz Prize of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) in 2013. In 2014, her project “dynamic nanoplasmonics” was awarded a Starting Grant (€1.5 million) of the European Research Council (ERC). During the International Year of Light, the European Optical Society (EOS), awarded her with the Light 2015 Young Woman in Photonics Award.


 2015 Young Scientist Prize for Optics (AC1)

Frank Koppens

Frank Koppens

Prof. Frank Koppens obtained his PhD in experimental physics at the Kavli Institute of Nanoscience, The Netherlands.  After a postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard University, since August 2010, Koppens is a group leader at the Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO). He has received the Christiaan Hugyensprijs 2012, the ERC award as well as two ERC proof-of-concept awards. Prof. Koppens is leader of the optoelectronics workpackage of the graphene flagship (1B€  project for 10 years). Since 2015, Koppens is also holder of an ICREA professorship.

The quantum nano-optoelectronics group of Prof. Koppens focuses on both science and technology of novel two-dimensional materials.  The goal of current projects is to study the interactions between light, plasmons and electrons in graphene and 2d materials, at ultra-fast timescales and  nano-scale lengthscales. The group also develops devices with applications for wearables, sensing, photodetection, infrared imaging, power conversion and nano-scale light processing and switching.

In total, Koppens has published more than 40 refereed papers (H-index 31), amongst which Nature (2x), Science (3x), Nature Physics (5x), Nature Photonics, Nature Materials, Nature Nanotech. (5x), Phys.Rev.Lett.(8x) and NanoLetters (6x).

Total number of citations >8000.