Prof Ben Murdin pays tribute to Maria Goeppert Mayer on International Women’s Day

Prof Ben Murdin gave a talk entitled “Two photon absorption: a tribute to the second most important female physicist of all time, on International Women’s Day” at University of Surrey on 8th March 2018.


Two-photon absorption is a quantum physics effect with no classical analogue, that makes it possible to jump twice as high as you might otherwise think. It is important for measurement of CPT symmetry violation of antimatter using anti-hydrogen, and is responsible for the way green laser pointers work. In this seminar I will talk about the invention of the effect, and the recent discovery by our group, published in this month’s issue of Nature Photonics, that the environment that provides the best two-photon absorption is a plain old silicon crystal.

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