DECEMBER 18, 2023
Zholents was honored for his work on the theory of optical stochastic cooling.
Alexander Zholents, a senior physicist at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory and distinguished fellow in the Accelerator Systems division is one of the recipients of this year’s Dieter Möhl Award.
The award is presented by CERN, the European laboratory for particle physics. It is in tribute to the late Dieter Möhl, a pioneer in the realm of particle beam cooling. The awards celebrate both early career and lifetime achievements in the field of beam cooling and its applications.
“I am deeply honored to receive this award,” said Zholents. “The intricacies of beam cooling are undoubtedly challenging, and my understanding has significantly benefited from studying Möhl’s insightful papers and engaging in two personal encounters with him. He was an exceptional scientist and educator and left an indelible mark on the field.”
Zholents was recognized for his groundbreaking work on the initial idea and theory of optical stochastic cooling. Stochastic cooling is an essential tool in achieving tight control over beams of protons, antiprotons and ions in circular accelerators such as Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider, a DOEOffice of Science user facility at Brookhaven National Laboratory. The inventor of this technique, Simon van der Meer, was awarded the Nobel prize in physics in 1984 for his work at CERN, which led to the discovery of the W and Z particles.
“I am deeply honored to receive this award. The intricacies of beam cooling are undoubtedly challenging, and my understanding has significantly benefited from studying Möhl’s insightful papers.” — Alexander Zholents, Argonne National Laboratory
Optical stochastic cooling takes the principles of stochastic cooling and achieves faster cooling by using speed and precision, as well as an optical amplifier and undulators instead of conventional radiofrequency methods. Zholents’s theories were first demonstrated in an accelerator at DOE’s Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in 2022.
“Additionally, my heartfelt gratitude extends to the scientists at Fermilab, whose groundbreaking work showcased the efficacy of optical stochastic cooling,” said Zholents. “Their contributions have been instrumental in advancing our collective knowledge in this domain.”
The accolade was presented at the COOL 2023 Conference hosted by CERN in October.