Henry Kapteyn has been elected to membership in the National Academy of Sciences, the academy announced on April 30, 2013. Kapteyn joins seven other members of the JILA faculty as members of the academy. They include John Hall (1984), Carl Wieman (1995), Eric Cornell (2000), Margaret Murnane (2004), Deborah Jin (2005) and Jun Ye (2011). NIST Nobel Laureate Dave Wineland and CU Physics Professors Noel Clark and John Wahr are also academy members.
Kapteyn's research interests include the development of new light sources at short wavelengths and their use in studies of dynamic processes in material and chemical systems. Kapteyn recently developed high-energy ultrashort-pulse laser technology in collaboration with Margaret Murnane. The new technology makes it possible to generate coherent extreme ultraviolet and soft x-ray bursts of femtosecond and attosecond duration.
The Kapteyn/Murnane group invented the first sub-10 femtosecond modelocked Ti:sapphire laser that is now a standard fixture in thousands of laboratories around the world. The group also developed technologies to amplify very short pulses to high peak powers. These new technologies have been adopted worldwide for multiple applications in science and technology. They have been commercialized through a Boulder, Colorado, spin-off company, KMLabs Inc. Professor Kapteyn serves as CEO of KMLabs.
Additional recognition of Kapteyn's accomplishments include the Ahmed Zewail Award in Ultrafast Science and Technology, the Arthur L Schawlow Prize, the R. W. Wood Prize, and the Willis E. Lamb Award for Laser Science and Quantum Optics. Kapteyn was elected to the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2007.