2014 Nobel Prize in Chemistry – The Chemistry of Optical Microscopy


Dr Taras Plakhotnik, The University of Queensland
This colloquium will be held in Parnell (07) 222 at 3pm.

This year the Nobel Prizes in Chemistry and Physics could easily be interchanged and some would consider the new outcome to be more logical. This might be true and is one of the reasons why we have a presentation about the prize in chemistry at a physics colloquium.  But it appears that the latest event in the Nobel Prize history is not the first time when a Nobel Prize in Chemistry has been awarded (at least partially) for progress in optical microscopy.  In my presentation, I will attempt to give a historical overview of the science involved (I have already recognized how difficult it will be even to mention all and everybody that were involved) in the achievements of the laureates.  Surprisingly, several other Nobel Prize winners have something (and quite directly) to do with the topic. And indeed, achievements in chemistry have made important contributions to the outcome. Although some may even argue that I should have used “have made it possible” above, others may say that Nobel Prize Committee has used the “development of super-resolved fluorescence microscopy” as an umbrella to cover the topics of single molecules, near-field and nonlinear optics. Well… I think I have confused you enough.  See you on Friday.