Svetlana G. Lukishova was born in Moscow. She received her MS (with honors) and PhD degrees (1977) from the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (FizTech). Her PhD was supervised by P.P. Pashinin and Nobel Prize winner A.M. Prokhorov and involved spatial beam-profile and temporal pulse-shape control in laser-fusion systems. MS and PhD works were done at the P.N. Lebedev Physical Institute of the USSR Academy of Sciences. After holding research positions at the I.V. Kurchatov Nuclear Power Institute, Troitsk branch TRINITI (Moscow Region), the Institute of Radioengineering and Electronics of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Moscow), and the Liquid Crystal Institute (Kent, OH), she joined the University of Rochester in 1999. In Russia she was awarded by the International Science (G. Soros) Foundation a Long-Term Grant, by the Russian Government and the Russian Foundation for Basic Research Grants for her work on nonlinear optics of liquid crystals. In addition to her research, she supervised and taught students at FizTech and served for the Soviet/Russian Committee of the International Scientific Radio Union URSI.
Dr. Lukishova has more than 30-year-experience with laser systems and interaction of laser radiation with matter. Currently her main research areas at the Institute of Optics and the Laboratory for Laser Energetics are photonic quantum information systems and nonlinear and coherent optics. She supervises students’ research projects, teaches and develops a Quantum Optics and Quantum Information Laboratory course supported by the National Science Foundation grant.
Dr. Lukishova’s research interests include both optical material and optical radiation properties.
Among her research accomplishments are the development of apodizing devices for suppression of diffraction and self-focusing in high-power Nd:glass laser amplifiers for fusion research and improving laser beam quality of solid-state lasers. Dr. Lukishova summarized her experience on laser beam spatial profile formation in her second written russian dissertation “Coherent Beam Apodization as the Method of Improving High-Power Laser Beam Quality and Divergence” (In addition to a PhD level degree, there is a second academic degree in Russia, the "Doctor of Sciences". This degree may be earned by those, who made a substantial contribution to the science; an American full professor may qualify for this degree).
More recently, her contributions centered on the interaction of high-power laser radiation with liquid crystals, in particular she studied of reflective, absorptive and refractive nonlinearities under nanosecond laser irradiation. These results are important for both liquid crystal laser optics and optical-power-limiting devices. New effects were observed for the first time, such as athermal cholesteric pitch unwinding by the field of a light wave, feedback-free pattern formation, photoinduced phase separation, and influence of cumulative effects on nonlinear optical response of liquid crystals to low-repetition-rate laser radiation.
For the last several years, S.G. Lukishova was a principal investigator of a project on a key hardware element for secure quantum communication. Single-photon source for quantum information was proposed and developed based on single-emitter fluorescence in photonic bandgap liquid crystal hosts with enhanced efficiency and definite polarization of single photons.
Dr. Lukishova has over 180 publications, 3 USSR Inventor Certificates, a US Patent, book contributions. She is a co-editor of Springer book Self-focusing: Past and Present. Fundamentals and Prospects.