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Serge Haroche

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Serge Haroche Receives the 2012 Nobel Prize in Physics

On Tuesday, October 9th, the Swedish Academy awarded the Nobel Prize for physics jointly to Serge Haroche and David J. Wineland. The two physicists were rewarded "for ground-breaking experimental methods that enable measuring and manipulation of individual quantum systems."


A former student at the ENS (Ecole Normale Supèrieur), Haroche earned his university teaching certification (agrégation) and PhD in physics in 1967 under the direction of Claude Cohen-Tannoudji, and his professorial habilitation in 1971 at Pierre and Marie Curie University (UPMC). His thesis subject was the theoretical and experimental study of the physical properties of atoms dressed by radio frequency photons.


Between 1967 and 1975, Haroche was a CNRS researcher and lecturer at the Ecole Polytechnique from 1973 to 1984.


Involved in many international collaboration projects, the physicist continued his activities as a full professor/researcher at UPMC from 1975 to 2001 and at Yale University (USA) from 1984 to 1993. He was also a visiting professor at several prestigious American universities such as Stanford University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Harvard University during these years. Haroche was also the Director of the Department of Physics at ENS from 1994 to 2000.


Since 2001, he has held the Chair of quantum physics at the Collège de France, where he became the administrator in September, and leads the group of quantum electrodynamics in cavities at the Kastler-Brossel laboratory (a joint ENS/UPMC/CNRS research unit).


Member of the Institut Universitaire de France for 10 years, he is also a member of the French Academy of Sciences, the European Academy of Sciences and a Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States.


A specialist in atomic physics and quantum optics, Haroche is the recipient of numerous prestigious international awards and received the gold medal of the CNRS in 2009.

For more information

Video: Paul Indelicato, vice president of research and innovation, congratulates Serge HarocheNouvelle fenêtre (subtitles in English)

The Nobel Prize siteNouvelle fenêtre

Collége de France presentation of Serge HarocheNouvelle fenêtre