Anne L'Huillier is a French/Swedish physicist working on the interaction between short and intense laser fields and atoms. Born in Paris in 1958, she defended her thesis on multiple multiphoton ionisation in 1986 at the Université Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris and the Commissariat à l'Energie Atomique (CEA). She obtained a permanent research position at CEA the same year. She was a postdoc at Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg in 1986 and at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles in 1988. She was a visiting scientist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in 1993. In 1995 she became an associate professor at Lund University and in 1997 she was appointed professor of physics. She has been a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences since 2004.
Anne L'Huillier's research, which is both experimental and theoretical, is centred on the generation of high-order harmonics in gases and its applications. In the time domain, these harmonics correspond to a series of extremely short light pulses, in the extreme ultraviolet spectral range and with a duration of a few tens or hundreds of attoseconds. Her research concerns the development and optimisation of attosecond sources and the use of this radiation for the study of ultrafast (electron) dynamics. Attosecond light sources can be designed for different goals, e.g. towards high intensity for non-linear pump/probe experiments or towards high repetition rate for applications in condensed matter physics. Another active research area for Anne L'Huillier and her group is the study of the electron dynamics of atomic systems, following a photoionisation event induced by the absorption of an attosecond light pulse.