Ken Schafer
Assistant Professor of Physics

Ph.D., 1989, University of Arizona


Department of Physics and Astronomy
202 Nicholson Hall
Louisiana State University
Baton Rouge, LA 70803-4001

Office:124-C Nicholson Hall
Phone:(504) 388-0466
FAX:(504) 388-5855

Present Research Interests
My research concerns the time-dependent quantum dynamics of strongly driven atomic and molecular systems. The primary focus is on the interaction of short pulse, high-intensity lasers with atoms, molecules and small clusters. The extreme conditions created by such lasers lead to a number of new, nonlinear phenomena including the emission of ultrafast pulses of short wavelength light. Such novel light sources might one day allow experimentalists to directly image chemical reactions or fast biophysical processes such as protein folding. Calculations of these and related phenomena frequently make use of large scale computer simulations as well as scientific visualization for their interpretation. A related interest is the creation and detection of "tailored" Rydberg wave packets - quantum mechanical superpositions of many different Rydberg states - using shaped laser pulses in conjunction with electric and magnetic fields. These wave packets can be, for example, elaborate "Schrödinger cat" states in which a single electron is driven to multiple distinct regions in space simultaneously.

Selected Publications

C. Rose-Petruck, K. J. Schafer, K. R. Wilson, and C. P. J. Barty, "Ultrafast electron dynamics and inner-shell ionization in laser driven clusters," Phys. Rev. A, (1996).

K. J. Schafer, K. C. Kulander, "High harmonic generation from ultrafast pump lasers," Phys. Rev. Lett. (1996).

K. J. Schafer and B. Yang, L. F. DiMauro and K. C. Kulander, "Above threshold ionization beyond the high harmonic cutoff," Phys. Rev. Lett. 70:1599 (1993).

K. C. Kulander, K. J. Schafer, and J. L. Krause, "Time-dependent theory of multiphoton processes," in Atoms in Intense Radiation Fields, M. Gavrila, Ed. (Advances in Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics, Academic Press, New York, 1992).

This page was updated last on Tuesday, December 17, 1996