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Postgraduate research project

Chip-based photonic devices for quantum technology

Competition funded View fees and funding
Type of degree
Doctor of Philosophy
Entry requirements
2:1 View full entry requirements
Faculty graduate school
Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences
Closing date

About the project

We are looking for a PhD student to join our interdisciplinary team of students, postdocs, and senior researchers developing chip-based, microscale optics for advancing quantum technologies.

Many quantum technologies, such as quantum computing, quantum communication, and quantum sensing, often rely on optics for the preparation, transmission, and read-out of quantum states. If we want to scale up the quantum information processing power of these devices, we therefore need to integrate a range of optical components onto the chip.

In this project you will contribute to the design and numerical simulation of advanced photonic devices tailored for quantum applications, working in close collaboration with fabricators and experimentalists. If you are interested in a PhD combining computer modelling and lab work and have the required skills, the project can also be adjusted for this. Potential areas of research include:

  • integrated optical waveguides and large area Bragg gratings: Investigate the incorporation of tilted Bragg gratings to couple light out of integrated waveguides and form beams of well-defined shape and polarisation for interaction with stationary trapped quantum particles (e.g. atoms or ions). The light can be used to laser cool the particles and/or for optical manipulation of their internal quantum states.
  • integrated photon collectors: Similar devices as above can be designed to collect photons emitted from trapped particles, either to read out their quantum state, or for coupling photons into optical fibres for long-distance transmission and the generation of remote quantum entanglement.freeform micro-optics: Develop innovative 
  • freeform micro-optic lenses, mirrors, and resonators for enhanced beam shaping, enabling the creation of more compact and more efficient quantum photonic systems.

If you have an interest in photonics, quantum technology, and computer-based modelling, you would be highly suitable for this project. You will benefit from our world-leading expertise in these fields and enjoy working in a highly supportive environment in our group in Southampton and collaboration with partner groups around the country within the UK National Quantum Technology Programme.

It is expected that students will publish several papers in leading academic journals and present their work at major international conferences, as their research progresses.

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