Prof. Jakub Zakrzewski from the Faculty of Physics, Astronomy and Applied Computer Science at Jagiellonian University and Dr Dominique Delande from the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) have received the Maria Skłodowska and Pierre Curie Polish–French Science Award for achievements in research on phenomena triggered by disorder in low-temperature ensembles of atoms at dimensions relevant for experiments and future quantum technologies.

Description of joint research

Jakub Zakrzewski and Dominique Delande began their scientific cooperation in 1991. Over 28 years they have succeeded in building a model system for long-term cooperation between Polish and French research teams, contributing to the creation of a prolific Polish/French school in the theory of the quantum physics of chaotic and/or disordered systems.

The research by the duo of Zakrzewski–Delande involves the physics of quantum mechanical systems, in which an important role is played by interference effects, particularly under conditions of chaos and/or disorder. The understanding of fundamental microscopic processes occurring in quantum systems is hugely important for rapid development of quantum technologies. This research is theoretical and computational, focussing on realistic quantum systems combined with experimental groups.

Over the last 10 years, the researchers’ cooperation has intensified, focusing on research on systems based on low-temperature atoms in optic networks. This unusual medium has proved to be a driving force in quantum physics. Due to the unmatched control over the parameters of the system, it enables experimental construction and analysis of models known from condensed-matter physics. This has contributed to the growth of theoretical research and computer simulations of such systems. The cooperation between Paris and Kraków has concentrated on the effects triggered by disorder in this medium. While various authors have restricted themselves to small systems, the great achievement of the Paris/Kraków team was to expand their research to realistic systems with dimensions enabling experiments to be conducted. This became possible thanks to development of a more effective parallel code for description of the temporal dynamics in quasi-one-dimensional multibody systems.

Their research has resulted in 36 joint publications, including seven articles in the prestigious journal Physical Review Letters.

About the laureates

Prof. Jakub Zakrzewski_fot. Krzysztof Magda_1
Pictured: Prof. Jakub Zakrzewski, photo: Krzysztof Magda

Prof. Jakub Maciej Zakrzewski (born in 1957 in Kraków) is a physicist and head of the Atomic Optics Department of the Marian Smoluchowski Institute of Physics at Jagiellonian University in Kraków. He specializes in quantum optics, quantum chaos, the physics of disordered systems, and cold atoms in optical networks.

He is a 1981 physics graduate of Jagiellonian University. He earned his doctorate in 1985 at the Polish Academy of Sciences and his postdoctoral (habilitation) degree in 1990 at Jagiellonian University. He was named a professor of physical sciences in 1996.

In 1986−1988 he pursued a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Southern California. Since the 1990s he has developed scientific contacts with French research institutions, particularly the Kastler–Brossel Laboratory in Paris, one of the world’s leading centres for quantum physics.

He has headed or participated in many scientific studies funded by grants from the National Science Centre (NCN) or the EU (e.g. pursuing research under a grant from QuantERA, the world’s largest instrument for funding research on quantum technology). He is the laureate of numerous awards and distinctions for scientific achievements.

He is the author of 169 scientific publications, which have been cited over 3,200 times.

Dr hab. Dominique Delande_fot. Archiwum prywatne
Pictured: Dr hab. Dominique Delande, photo: private archive

Dominique Delande (born in 1958 in Rouen) is a physicist and director of research at the Kastler–Brossel Laboratory, a joint unit of the École Normale(ENS), Sorbonne University, and the National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS). His scientific interests include dynamics of complex systems (particularly quantum systems), quantum chaos, and mesoscopic physics.

He completed his physics studies in 1981 at ENS in Paris with a 3rd-degree thesis (equivalent to a doctorate) and was hired by the Laboratoire de spectroscopie Hertzienne, founded by Nobel laureate Alfred Kastler and Jean Brossel. Now known as the Kastler–Brossel Laboratory, it is a joint research unit of ENS, Sorbonne University, CNRS and the Collège de France. He earned his postdoctoral (habilitation) degree in 1988.

He has achieved many scientific attainments and awards and has won numerous grants, including from the Agence Nationale de la Recherche. He has pursued cooperation with Polish research institutions since the 1990s.

He is the author of some 200 publications, which have been cited over 5,200 times.