The research of Dr. Becker and his group is focused on the theoretical analysis and numerical simulations of ultrafast processes in atoms, molecules and nanostructures, which can be observed and controlled using intense laser pulses. Applications can be found in basic and applied research. The study of the response of matter to electromagnetic radiation is closely related to the development of intense laser systems generating ultrashort light pulses. The strengths of these light fields exceed that of the Coulomb field within an atom or molecule while the pulse lengths have decreased below the femtosecond (10^15 s) barrier and a new research area called attoscience evolved.
keywords
atomic, molecular and optical physics, ultrafast intense laser science, attosecond and femtosecond dynamics, coherent control, nanostructures, laser pulse propagation and filamentation, abinitio numerical simulation, Smatrix theory
PHYS 2210  Classical Mechanics and Mathematical Methods 1
Primary Instructor

Spring 2020 / Spring 2022
Theoretical Newtonian mechanics, including position and velocity dependent forces, oscillation, stability, noninertial frames and gravitation from extended bodies. Ordinary differential equations, vector algebra, curvilinear coordinates, complex numbers, and Fourier series will be introduced in the context of the mechanics.
PHYS 3210  Classical Mechanics and Mathematical Methods 2
Primary Instructor

Spring 2023 / Fall 2023
Lagrangian and Hamiltonian treatment of theoretical mechanics, including coupled oscillations, waves in continuous media, central force motion, rigid body motion and fluid dynamics. The calculus of variations, linear algebra, tensor algebra, vector calculus, and partial differential equations will be introduced in the context of the mechanics.
PHYS 3310  Principles of Electricity and Magnetism 1
Primary Instructor

Fall 2018 / Spring 2024
Covers mathematical theory of electricity and magnetism, including electrostatics, magnetostatics, and polarized media, and provides an introduction to electromagnetic fields, waves, and special relativity.
PHYS 3320  Principles of Electricity and Magnetism 2
Primary Instructor

Spring 2019 / Fall 2022 / Fall 2024
Continuation of PHYS 3310. Electromagnetic induction; magnetic energy; microscopic theory of magnetic properties; Ac circuits; Maxwell's Equations; planewaves; waveguides and transmission lines; radiation from electric and magnetic dipoles and from an accelerated charge.
PHYS 4410  Quantum Mechanics 2
Primary Instructor

Fall 2019
Extends quantum mechanics to include perturbation theory and its applications to atomic fine structure, multiparticle systems, interactions with external forces, the periodic table and dynamical processes including electromagnetic transition rates.
PHYS 7550  Atomic and Molecular Spectra
Primary Instructor

Spring 2018
Covers theory of atomic structure and spectra, including coupling of angular momenta, tensor operators, energy levels, fine and hyperfine structure, transition probabilities, Zeeman and Stark effects. Molecular spectra: electronic, vibrational, and rotational states. Rotation matrices, symmetric top.