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For more than 30 years, Dr. Pierre Tournois, co-founder and scientific director of FASTLITE in Palaiseau, France, has made significant contributions to the development of pulse compression technology for radar, sonar and optical lasers. In 1964, he invented the Gires-Tournois Interferometer (GTI), the first device to compress optical laser pulses now used in basic and applied research, laser designs, and more recently, optical communications. Dr. Tournois also invented the DAZZLER, an acousto-optic programmable pulse shaper, with a simple computer interface, designed to help chemists control photochemical reactions at will and to help physicists explore how atoms behave on the scale of one quintillionth of a second.
He is a founding member of the French National Academy of Technologies. Dr. Tournois also is an emeritus member of the French Societé de l'Electricité , de l'Electronique et des Technologies de l'Information et de la Communication.