Linear and non-linear core-level spectroscopies to investigate the structure and dynamics of matter

Dean's Distinguished Speaker


Core-level (absorption, emission, photoelectron) spectroscopies in the extreme-ultraviolet (EUV) to hard X-ray domains are element-selective tools that deliver information about the spin and electronic structure of a given atom and about the geometric structure around it. The development of ultrafast core-level spectroscopies has added the information about dynamical processes, which underlie how matter functions. The advent of X-ray free electron lasers has now enabled non-linear core-level spectroscopies, akin to the revolution brought about by the birth of the laser in the early 1960s. In this talk, I will dwell on examples of electronic and structural dynamics of chemical, biological systems and of materials unravelled by ultrafast X-ray spectroscopies. I will then discuss the nascent EUV/X-ray non-linear optical and spectroscopic techniques, which promise a new dimension in the way we interrogate matter properties.



After graduating from the University of London (UK), he obtained his PhD at the University of Paris-sud (Orsay) in 1981 and became research associate of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS). In 1987, he moved to Germany and became research associate at the Free University of Berlin (Germany). In 1993, he was appointed Full Professor of Physics at the University of Lausanne (Switzerland), and in 2003, he became Professor of Chemistry and Physics at the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne. He has pioneered several novel ultrafast spectroscopic tools, specifically X-ray spectroscopy and deep-ultraviolet spectroscopy, with which he solved a number of scientific questions on the fundamental aspects of photo-induced dynamics of molecules and proteins in solution, and of solids and nanosystems. 

In recognition of his achievements, Majed Chergui has been awarded, among others, the 2009 Humboldt Research Prize (Germany), The 2010 Kuwait Prize for Physics (Kuwait), the 2015 Earle Plyler Award (American Physical Society), the 2019 Liversidge Award (Royal Society of Chemistry), the 2021 Ahmed Zewail Award (American Chemical Society) and the 2023 Rognlie Prize (American Crystallographic Association). He is Fellow of several scientific European and American societies and is Foreign Correspondent of the Spanish Royal Academy of Sciences. 


Professor Majed Chergui


Event Quick Information

17 May, 2023
02:15 PM - 03:45 PM
KAUST, Auditorium between Bldg. 4 and Bldg. 5