A. H. Zewail. Voyage Through Time: Walks of Life to the Nobel Prize,
American University in Cairo (AUC),
Cairo, 2002; so far in 17 languages and editions: English, French,
German, Spanish, Romanian, Hungarian (in press), Russian, Arabic,
Chinese, Korean, Bahasa Malaysian, Indonesian, Hindi; and 4 editions.
For detailed reviews of this book see, for example, articles written by
W. Sibbett, B. V. McKoy and C. A. McKoy, and M. Chergui.
For this journey on the road to the Nobel prize, I have been asked several
times to write a biography, or at least a biographical summary of my life. I
declined these invitations. I was of the opinion that a traditional biography
should represent a lifetime of work and experience and much effort and time are
needed to do it well. In July of 1997 while on a trip to Cairo this strong
feeling softened to a more moderate one. I was stimulated to ask a few
questions by two books I was reading, one titled A
History of Knowledge by Charles van Doren and the other Making Waves
by Charles Townes. How did I acquire knowledge? Why did I become a
scientist? What are the forces that have determined the walks of my own
life? What are the meanings of faith, destiny, and luck? In the attempt
to answer such complex questions, I began to sketch my thoughts....
D. L. Smith. Coherent Thinking,
Eng. Sci. 62, 7 (1999)
At 5:40 in the doggone morning on Tuesday,
October 12, Ahmed Zewail got a phone call.
But it wasn't a wrong number or a particularly
ambitious aluminum-window salesman—it was
the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences informing
him he had won the 1999 Nobel Prize in chemistry.
The citation reads, in part, that Zewail "is
being rewarded for his pioneering investigation of
fundamental chemical reactions, using ultra-short
laser flashes on the time scale on which the reactions
Conferences and Collaborations
Energy in Cosmos, Molecules and Life,
Alfred Nobel Symposium, Sånga-Säby Conference Center, Sweden, June 18-22, 2005.
unique occasion gathers the leading competence from three broad
scientific areas to discuss energy issues from an interdisciplinary
perspective. This Nobel Symposium is the first to include all of the
natural science categories of the Nobel Prize: physics, chemistry and
physiology or medicine. The purpose is to create conditions for
exchange and interaction, partly between different disciplines and
partly between promising young researchers and the world's leading
Frontiers of Molecular Science,
Nobel Centennial Symposium, Friiberghs Manor, Örsundsbro and Stockholm
University, Sweden, December 4-7, 2001.
Foundation's Symposium program was initiated in 1965. Since that time
more than a hundred symposia have taken place. The symposia are devoted
areas of science where breakthroughs are occurring or deal with other
primary cultural or social significance. A series of Nobel Centennial
was organized in 2001 to commemorate 100th anniversary of the Nobel
prizes given out for world-class accomplishments in physics, chemistry,
literature, peace, and physiology or medicine...
a global effort to promote the understanding and appreciation of molecular science in society.
Frontiers, a world-wide virtual institute, will seek to strengthen
the position of science in society—among the public, in education and
among politicians—as a primary approach to describing and analyzing
reality. The institute will provide a forum for exchange and analysis
of scientific advances and their implications, and will employ various
strategies to engage the public in an open dialogue. The institute's
activities will promote scientific knowledge in general with special
emphasis on the molecular perspective. As knowledge may be considered a
right to all, global open access will be a guiding principle...
Science and Technology
Center for Ultrafast Science and Technology.
At Caltech, the main mission of the newly-established Physical Biology
Center for Ultrafast Science and Technology (UST) is to develop the
science and technology for observing complex molecular structures in
motion using diffraction, spectroscopy, and microscopy. Such combined
atomic-scale resolutions in space and time constitute the basis for a
new field of study in what we refer to as four-dimensional (4D)
Back to the Future
A. H. Zewail. The World in 50 Years, in
The Way We Will Be 50 Years from Today, ed. M. Wallace, Thomas
Nelson, Nashville, 2008, p. 228.
world is an uncertain place, which is why the future and the unknown
absolutely fascinate us. Veteran television journalist Mike Wallace
asked the question "What will life be like 50 years from now?" to sixty
of the world's greatest minds. Their responses offer a fascinating
glimpse into the cultural, scientific, political, and spiritual moods
of the times...</blockquote>
A. H. Zewail. Science and Technology in the Twenty-First Century,
Academy of Sciences of Malaysia (ASM) Public Lecture, ASM, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, October 14,
Since the beginning of human civilization, science and technology has progressed in a
continuous process. Fire must have been an exciting new technology for the first humans
and to this day we are continuing research to fully answer the question, what is fire?
But the search for new knowledge is based on rational thinking, which is fundamental
for progress and for making new discoveries...</blockquote>
Physical Biology: From
Atoms to Medicine, ed. A. H. Zewail,
Imperial College Press, London (2008).
D. Shorokhov and A. H. Zewail. 4D Electron Imaging: Principles and Perspectives,
Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys. 10, 2879 (2008).
O.-H. Kwon, B. Barwick, H. S. Park, J. S. Baskin and A. H. Zewail. Nanoscale Mechanical Drumming Visualized by 4D Electron Microscopy,
Nano Lett. 8, 3557 (2008).
B. Barwick, H. S. Park, O.-H. Kwon, J. S. Baskin and A. H. Zewail. 4D Imaging of Transient Structures and Morphologies in Ultrafast Electron Microscopy,
Science 322, 1227 (2008).
D.-S. Yang, C. Lao and A. H. Zewail. 4D Electron Diffraction Reveals Correlated Unidirectional Behavior in Zinc Oxide Nanowires,
Science 321, 1660 (2008).
O.-H. Kwon, B. Barwick, H. S. Park, J. S. Baskin and A. H. Zewail. 4D Visualization of Embryonic, Structural Crystallization by Single-Pulse Microscopy,
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 105, 8519 (2008).
M. M. Lin, L. Meinhold, D. Shorokhov and
A. H. Zewail. Unfolding and Melting of DNA (RNA) Hairpins: The
Concept of Structure-Specific 2D Dynamic Landscapes,
Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys. 10, 4227 (2008).
F. Carbone, P. Baum, P. Rudolf and A. H. Zewail.
Structural Preablation Dynamics of Graphite Observed by Ultrafast Electron
Crystallography, Phys. Rev. Lett. 100, 035501 (2008).</blockquote>
H. Ma, C. Wan, A. Wu and A. H. Zewail. DNA Folding and Melting in Real Time:
Observed Collapsed Structures Redefine the Energy Landscape,
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 104, 712 (2007).</blockquote>
O.-H. Kwon and A. H. Zewail. Double Proton
Transfer Dynamics of Model DNA Base Pairs in the Condensed Phase,
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 104, 8703 (2007). </blockquote>
J. Tang, D.-S. Yang and A. H. Zewail. Ultrafast Electron
Crystallography. 3. Theoretical Modeling of Structural Dynamics,
J. Phys. Chem. C 111, 8957 (2007).</blockquote>
H. S. Park, J. S. Baskin, O.-H. Kwon and A. H. Zewail. Atomic-Scale Imaging in Real and Energy
Space Developed in Ultrafast Electron Microscopy, Nano Lett. 7,
N. Gedik, D.-S. Yang,
G. Logvenov, I. Bozovic and A. H. Zewail. Nonequilibrium Phase Transitions in Cuprates
Observed by Ultrafast Electron Crystallography, Science
316, 425 (2007).
P. Baum, D.-S. Yang and
A. H. Zewail. 4D Visualization of Transitional Structures
in Phase Transformations by Electron Diffraction, Science
318, 788 (2007).</blockquote>
A. H. Zewail. 4D Ultrafast Electron Diffraction,
Crystallography, and Microscopy, Annu. Rev. Phys. Chem.
57, 65 (2006).</blockquote>
J. S. Baskin and A. H. Zewail. Oriented
Ensembles in Ultrafast Electron Diffraction, Chem. Phys. Chem.
7, 1562 (2006).</blockquote>
M. S. Grinolds, V. A. Lobastov, J.
Weissenrieder and A. H. Zewail. Four-Dimensional Ultrafast Electron
Microscopy of Phase Transitions, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA
103, 18427 (2006). </blockquote>
V. A. Lobastov, R. Srinivasan and A. H. Zewail. Four-Dimensional Ultrafast Electron
Microscopy, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 102, 7069 (2005). </blockquote>
R. Srinivasan, J. S. Feenstra, S. T.
Park, S. Xu and A. H. Zewail. Dark
Structures in Molecular Radiationless Transitions Determined by Ultrafast
Diffraction, Science 307, 558 (2005).</blockquote>
D. H. Paik, I-R. Lee, D.-S. Yang, J. S. Baskin
and A. H. Zewail. Electrons in
Finite-Sized Water Cavities: Hydration Dynamics Observed in Real Time, Science 306, 672 (2004).</blockquote>
C.-Y. Ruan, V. A. Lobastov, F.
Vigliotti, S. Chen and A. H. Zewail. Ultrafast Electron Crystallography of
Interfacial Water, Science 304, 80 (2004).</blockquote>
H. Ihee, V. A. Lobastov, U. M. Gomez,
B. M. Goodson, R. Srinivasan, C.-Y. Ruan and A. H. Zewail. Direct Imaging of Transient Molecular
Structures with Ultrafast Diffraction, Science
291, 458 (2001). </blockquote>
Latest Press Releases
Caltech 4D Microscope Revolutionizes the Way We Look at the Nano World,
California Institute of Technology, Pasadena CA, November 20, 2008.
More than a century ago, the development of the earliest motion picture
technology made what had been previously thought "magical" a reality:
capturing and recreating the movement and dynamism of the world around
us. A breakthrough technology based on new concepts has now
accomplished a similar feat, but on an atomic scale—by allowing, for
the first time, the real-time, real-space visualization of fleeting
changes in the structure and shape of matter barely a billionth of a
meter in size.
Such "movies" of atomic changes in materials of gold and graphite,
obtained using the technique, are featured in a paper appearing in the
November 21 issue of the journal Science. 4D microscopy videos can be viewed at the UST web site...
Zewail Honored with Einstein Award,
California Institute of Technology, Pasadena CA, September 21, 2006.
The World Cultural Council will present the 2006 Albert Einstein World Award of Science
to Nobel laureate Ahmed Zewail, the Linus Pauling Professor of Chemical
Physics and professor of physics at the California Institute of
This recognition is for his "pioneering development of the new field of
femtoscience and for his seminal contributions to the revolutionary
discipline of physical biology, creating new ways for better
understanding the functional behavior of biological systems by directly
visualizing them in the four dimensions of space and time," according
to the World Cultural Council's announcement...
Nobel Laureate Receives $17.5
Million Grant to Create the New Field of Physical Biology, California
Institute of Technology, Pasadena CA, August 10, 2005.
Nobel Prize-winning chemist and physicist Ahmed Zewail has received an $17.5
million grant from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation to create the
Ultrafast Science and Technology (UST) Center at the California Institute of Technology.
The center will focus on a new scientific discipline at Caltech for which Zewail has coined the name physical biology.
The field will create new ways of understanding the dynamical behavior
of biological systems by directly observing them in the four dimensions
of space and time...
and his site in internet is
with my best wishes