Donna Strickland is Associate Professor at the University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada and the first woman to receive the award of Nobel Physics Prize in 55 years, after Marie Curie who won the award in 1903 and Maria Goeppert-Mayer winning the prize in 1963.
“First of all, you have to think it is crazy!” tweeted Donna on her win. She further said, “We need to celebrate women physicists because we’re out there. I’m honoured to be one of those women.”
Born near Toronto, Canada in n1959, Donna obtained her PhD at the University of Rochester with Gerard Mourou who she shares her honour with, and Mourou was also her advisor. They were jointly working on developing ‘chirped pulse amplification’ technique’, a method of generating high-intensity, ultra-short optical pulses, for which they were awarded the Nobel Physics Prize.
Mourou is Professor Emeritus at the University of Michigan and the École Polytechnique in Palaiseau France.
Apart from Donna and Mourou Arthur Ashkin of the US also received the prize for the optical tweezers and their application to biological systems.
The Nobel Prize in Physics is an award of one million USD rewarded by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm, Sweden.