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Mathieu Kociak was awarded a medal of the Royal Society of Microscopy


The "Alan Agar" Medal of the Royal Society of Microscopy-RMS (UK) rewards outstanding scientific achievements in the field of physical or life sciences. With this medal, the RMS honors a work that represents "the basis for unification between electronic and optical microscopy."

Mr. Kociak and his colleagues played a leading role in the last decade to the emergence of electron-based spectroscopy (cathodoluminescence and electron energy loss spectroscopy) as major technics for nanooptics. This includes both theoretical and experimental developments, and a major effort in instrumentation - particularly the design and implementation of a cathodoluminescence detection system in a scanning transmission electron microscope (STEM).

The unification of the two major parts of microscopy (optical and electronic) is largely underway, partly motivated by the work of Dr. Kociak and colleagues.

Figure : An example of the use of electron microscopy and spectroscopy for nanooptics : surface plasmon mapping by two complementary techniques : energy loss spectroscopy (EELS) and cathodoluminescence (CL). A. Dark Field image of a triangular gold nanoprism. B. EELS Hyperspectral imaging. We can clearly see two plasmons modes, a low-energy one localized at the tips and a higher energy one on the sides of the nanoprism. C. CL Hyperspectral imaging on the same nanoprism. Only the mode localized at the tip is visible, demonstrating the fundamental difference between the two techniques. The EELS is sensitive to all modes, while CL is only sensitive to the dipole modes (radiative modes).