STOCKHOLM (AP) — Three scientists won the Nobel Prize in Physics on Tuesday for their work with lasers.
Arthur Ashkin of the United States was awarded half the 9-million-kronor ($1.01 million) prize; the other half is shared by Gérard Mourou of France and Canadian Donna Strickland.
Sweden’s Royal Academy of Sciences, which chose the winners, said Ashkin, 96, developed “optical tweezers” that can grab tiny particles such as viruses without damaging them.
Strickland and Mourou helped develop short and intense laser pulses that have broad industrial and medical applications.
Strickland is the first female Nobel laureate to be named in three years and is only the third woman to have won the physics prize; the first was Marie Curie in 1903.
“Obviously we need to celebrate women physicists, because we’re out there. And hopefully in time it’ll start to move forward at a faster rate, maybe,” Strickland said in a phone call with the academy after the prize announcement.
On Monday, American James Allison and Japan’s Tasuku Honjo won the Nobel medicine prize for groundbreaking work in fighting cancer with the body’s own immune system.
The Nobel chemistry prize comes Wednesday, followed by the peace prize on Friday. The economics prize, which is not technically a Nobel, will be announced Oct. 8.
2018 Nobel Prizes
Monday: Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine was awarded to James P. Allison and Tasuku Honjo for advances in discovering how the immune system can fight off cancer.
Tuesday: Nobel Prize in physics was awarded to Arthur Ashkin, Gérard Mourou and Donna Strickland for groundbreaking inventions in the field of laser physics.
Wednesday: Nobel Prize in chemistry was awarded to Frances Arnold, George Smith, and Gregory Winter for using evolutionary methods to solve modern problems.
Friday: Nobel Peace Prize will be awarded.
Monday, Oct. 8: Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences will be awarded.