Serge Haroche

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Serge Haroche
Serge Haroche 1 2012.jpg
Serge Haroche in Stockholm (2012)
Born (1944-09-11) 11 September 1944 (age 74)
Alma mater École normale supérieure
Pierre-and-Marie-Curie University (Ph.D.)
Awards CNRS Gold medal (2009)
Nobel Prize for Physics (2012)
Scientific career
Institutions Pierre-and-Marie-Curie University
Yale University
Collège de France
Doctoral advisor Claude Cohen-Tannoudji

Serge Haroche (born 11 September 1944) [1] is a French physicist who was awarded the 2012 Nobel Prize for Physics jointly with David J. Wineland for "ground-breaking experimental methods that enable measuring and manipulation of individual quantum systems", a study of the particle of light, the photon. [2] [3] [4] This and his other works developed laser spectroscopy. Since 2001, Haroche is a Professor at the Collège de France and holds the Chair of Quantum Physics. In 1971 he defended his doctoral thesis in physics at the University of Paris VI, his research has been conducted under the direction of Claude Cohen-Tannoudji. [5]

Physicist scientist who does research in physics

A physicist is a scientist who specializes in the field of physics, which encompasses the interactions of matter and energy at all length and time scales in the physical universe. Physicists generally are interested in the root or ultimate causes of phenomena, and usually frame their understanding in mathematical terms. Physicists work across a wide range of research fields, spanning all length scales: from sub-atomic and particle physics, through biological physics, to cosmological length scales encompassing the universe as a whole. The field generally includes two types of physicists: experimental physicists who specialize in the observation of physical phenomena and the analysis of experiments, and theoretical physicists who specialize in mathematical modeling of physical systems to rationalize, explain and predict natural phenomena. Physicists can apply their knowledge towards solving practical problems or to developing new technologies.

David J. Wineland American physicist

David Jeffrey Wineland is an American Nobel-laureate physicist at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) physics laboratory. His work has included advances in optics, specifically laser cooling trapped ions and using ions for quantum computing operations. He was awarded the 2012 Nobel Prize in Physics, jointly with Serge Haroche, for "ground-breaking experimental methods that enable measuring and manipulation of individual quantum systems".

The photon is a type of elementary particle, the quantum of the electromagnetic field including electromagnetic radiation such as light, and the force carrier for the electromagnetic force. The photon has zero rest mass and always moves at the speed of light within a vacuum.


Personal life and family

Serge Haroche was born in Casablanca, Morocco, to Albert Haroche (1920–1998), from a Moroccan Jewish family, and Valentine Haroche, née Roubleva (1921–1998) a teacher who was born in Odessa to a Jewish family of physicians who relocated to Morocco in the early 1920s. His father, a lawyer trained in Rabat, was one of seven children born to a family of teachers (Isaac and Esther Haroche) who worked at the École de l’Alliance israélite (AIU). [6] [7] [8] [9] [10] [11] [12] Both paternal grandparents of Serge Haroche had been AIU students in their respective hometowns of Marrakesh and Tétouan (the school which Esther Azerad attended in Tétouan had been founded in 1862; it was the first school of the AIU network). [13]

Casablanca City / State in Casablanca-Settat, Morocco

Casablanca, located in the central-western part of Morocco and bordering the Atlantic Ocean, is the largest city in Morocco. It is also the largest city in the Maghreb region, as well as one of the largest and most important cities in Africa, both economically and demographically.

History of the Jews in Morocco

Moroccan Jews constitute an ancient community. Before the founding of Israel in 1948, there were about 250,000 to 350,000 Jews in the country, which gave Morocco the largest Jewish community in the Muslim world, but by 2017 only 2,000 or so remain. Jews in Morocco, originally speakers of Berber languages, Judeo-Moroccan Arabic or Judaeo-Spanish, were the first in the country to adopt the French language, and unlike the general population French remains the main language of members of the Jewish community there.

Rublev or Rubleva is a Russian surname. The origin of the surname can come either from Russian unit of currency ruble or from an old kind of washboards called rubels that might indicate the profession of an ancestor.

Haroche left Morocco and settled in France in 1956, at the end of the French protectorate treaty.

Morocco Country in North Africa

Morocco, officially the Kingdom of Morocco, is a country located in the Maghreb region of North West Africa with an area of 710,850 km2 (274,460 sq mi). Its capital is Rabat, the largest city Casablanca. It overlooks the Mediterranean Sea to the north and the Atlantic Ocean to the west. Morocco claims the areas of Ceuta, Melilla and Peñón de Vélez de la Gomera, all of them under Spanish jurisdiction.

He currently lives in Paris; he is married to the sociologist Claudine Haroche (née Zeligson), also descending from the Russian Jewish émigrés family, with two children (aged 40 and 43). [14] [15] [16] He is the uncle of French singer–songwriter and actor Raphaël Haroche (known as Raphaël, his stage name). [17]

Jews in Russia have historically constituted a large religious diaspora; the vast territories of the Russian Empire at one time hosted the largest population of Jews in the world. Within these territories the primarily Ashkenazi Jewish communities of many different areas flourished and developed many of modern Judaism's most distinctive theological and cultural traditions, while also facing periods of anti-Semitic discriminatory policies and persecutions. The largest group among Russian Jews are Ashkenazi Jews, but the community also includes a significant proportion of other non-Ashkenazi Diasporan Jewish groups, such as Mountain Jews, Sephardic Jews, Crimean Karaites, Krymchaks, Bukharan Jews, and Georgian Jews.

Raphaël Haroche French singer

Raphaël Haroche, professionally known under his mononym Raphael, is a French singer–songwriter and actor.


Haroche worked in the Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS) as a research scientist from 1967 to 1975, and spent a year (1972–1973) as a visiting post-doc in Stanford University, in Arthur Leonard Schawlow's team. In 1975 he moved to a professor position at Paris VI University. At the same time he taught in other institutions, in particular at the École polytechnique (1973–1984), MIT (1980), Harvard University (1981), Yale University (1984–1993) and Conservatoire national des arts et métiers (2000). He was head of the Physics department at the École normale supérieure from 1994 to 2000.

Centre national de la recherche scientifique French research organisation

The French National Center for Scientific Research is the largest governmental research organisation in France and the largest fundamental science agency in Europe. In 2016, it employed 31,637 staff, including 11,137 tenured researchers, 13,415 engineers and technical staff, and 7,085 contractual workers. It is headquartered in Paris and has administrative offices in Brussels, Beijing, Tokyo, Singapore, Washington, D.C., Bonn, Moscow, Tunis, Johannesburg, Santiago de Chile, Israel, and New Delhi.

Stanford University private research university located in Stanford, California, United States

Leland Stanford Junior University is a private research university in Stanford, California. Stanford is known for its academic strength, wealth, proximity to Silicon Valley, and ranking as one of the world's top universities.

Arthur Leonard Schawlow American physicist

Arthur Leonard Schawlow was an American physicist and co-inventor of the laser with Charles Townes. His central insight, which Townes overlooked, was the use of two mirrors as the resonant cavity to take maser action from microwaves to visible wavelengths. He shared the 1981 Nobel Prize in Physics with Nicolaas Bloembergen and Kai Siegbahn for his work using lasers to determine atomic energy levels with great precision.

Since 2001, Haroche has been a Professor at the Collège de France and holds the Chair of Quantum Physics. He is a member of the Société Française de Physique, the European Physical society and a fellow and member of the American Physical Society.

Quantum mechanics branch of physics dealing with phenomena at scales of the order of the Planck constant

Quantum mechanics, including quantum field theory, is a fundamental theory in physics which describes nature at the smallest scales of energy levels of atoms and subatomic particles.

The Société Française de Physique (SFP) is the main professional society of French physicists.

The European Physical Society (EPS) is a non-profit organization whose purpose is to promote physics and physicists in Europe through methods such as physics outreach. Formally established in 1968, its membership includes the national physical societies of 42 countries, and some 3200 individual members. The Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft, the world's largest organization of physicists, is a major member.

In September 2012, Serge Haroche was elected by his peers to the position of administrator of the Collège de France.

On 9 October 2012 Haroche was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics, together with the American physicist David Wineland, for their work regarding measurement and manipulation of individual quantum systems.


Serge Haroche (who won Nobel Prize in Physics in 2012) visited Stockholm, June 2016, as a member of the Wallenberg Foundation Scientific Advisory Board. Serge Haroche (Nobel in Physics 2012) in Stockholm, June 2016.jpg
Serge Haroche (who won Nobel Prize in Physics in 2012) visited Stockholm, June 2016, as a member of the Wallenberg Foundation Scientific Advisory Board.

Haroche works primarily in atomic physics and quantum optics. [18] [19] [20] [21] [22] [23] [24] He is principally known for proving quantum decoherence by experimental observation, while working with colleagues at the École normale supérieure in Paris in 1996.

After a PhD dissertation on dressed atoms under the supervision of Claude Cohen-Tannoudji (himself a Nobel Prize recipient) from 1967 to 1971, he developed new methods for laser spectroscopy, based on the study of quantum beats and superradiance. He then moved on to Rydberg atoms, giant atomic states particularly sensitive to microwaves, which makes them well adapted for studying the interactions between light and matter. He showed that such atoms, coupled to a superconducting cavity containing a few photons, are well-suited to the testing of quantum decoherence and to the realization of quantum logic operations necessary for the treatment of quantum information.


Serge Haroche after his Nobel Lecture


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  2. 1 2 "Press release – Particle control in a quantum world". Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. Retrieved 9 October 2012.
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  11. alexandra j. wall (2004-06-04). "New Jewish Agenda founder Roublev dies at 69". Retrieved 2013-01-12.
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  14. Claudine Haroche (Zeligson). Retrieved on 2013-01-27.
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  19. Sayrin, C. M.; Dotsenko, I.; Zhou, X.; Peaudecerf, B.; Rybarczyk, T. O.; Gleyzes, S. B.; Rouchon, P.; Mirrahimi, M.; Amini, H.; Brune, M.; Raimond, J. M.; Haroche, S. (2011). "Real-time quantum feedback prepares and stabilizes photon number states". Nature. 477 (7362): 73–77. arXiv: 1107.4027 . Bibcode:2011Natur.477...73S. doi:10.1038/nature10376. PMID   21886159.
  20. Deléglise, S.; Dotsenko, I.; Sayrin, C. M.; Bernu, J.; Brune, M.; Raimond, J. M.; Haroche, S. (2008). "Reconstruction of non-classical cavity field states with snapshots of their decoherence". Nature. 455 (7212): 510–514. arXiv: 0809.1064 . Bibcode:2008Natur.455..510D. doi:10.1038/nature07288. PMID   18818653.
  21. Guerlin, C.; Bernu, J.; Deléglise, S.; Sayrin, C. M.; Gleyzes, S. B.; Kuhr, S.; Brune, M.; Raimond, J. M.; Haroche, S. (2007). "Progressive field-state collapse and quantum non-demolition photon counting". Nature. 448 (7156): 889–893. arXiv: 0707.3880 . Bibcode:2007Natur.448..889G. doi:10.1038/nature06057. PMID   17713527.
  22. Gleyzes, S. B.; Kuhr, S.; Guerlin, C.; Bernu, J.; Deléglise, S.; Busk Hoff, U.; Brune, M.; Raimond, J. M.; Haroche, S. (2007). "Quantum jumps of light recording the birth and death of a photon in a cavity". Nature. 446 (7133): 297–300. arXiv: quant-ph/0612031 . Bibcode:2007Natur.446..297G. doi:10.1038/nature05589. PMID   17361178.
  23. Bertet, P.; Osnaghi, S.; Rauschenbeutel, A.; Nogues, G.; Auffeves, A.; Brune, M.; Raimond, J. M.; Haroche, S. (2001). "A complementarity experiment with an interferometer at the quantum-classical boundary". Nature. 411 (6834): 166–170. Bibcode:2001Natur.411..166B. doi:10.1038/35075517. PMID   11346787.
  24. Jean-Michel Raimond; Serge Haroche (2006). Exploring the quantum: atoms, cavities and photons. Oxford [Oxfordshire]: Oxford University Press. ISBN   0-19-850914-6.
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Preceded by
Saul Perlmutter
Adam G. Riess
Brian P. Schmidt
Nobel Prize in Physics laureate
With: David J. Wineland
Succeeded by
François Englert
Peter Higgs