ICFO is a research excellence center devoted to science and technologies of light with the mission to conduct frontier research, train the next generation of scientists and provide knowledge and technology transfer. The Institute was founded in 2002 and today it counts with more than 400 researchers dedicated to fundamental and applied research addressing standing issues like health, renewable energies, information technologies, security and industrial processes.
The Atomic Quantum Optics Research Group, led by Prof. Dr. Morgan W. Mitchell, is an experimental quantum optics research group interested in the quantum physics of light-matter interactions. To study light-matter interactions at the most fundamental level, we trap and cool individual neutral atoms in sub-wavelength traps and use cavity-enhanced parametric down-conversion to generate atom-resonant entangled photon pairs. We use high-numerical-aperture lenses to match the atomic dipole radiation pattern to the spatial modes of the propagating photons, and thus create a strong light-matter interaction in free space. We are interested in questions about the foundations of physics, e.g. the relationship of stimulated emission to the “cloning” of quantum states, new quantum technologies, e.g. atomic detectors of photonic entanglement, and new optical technologies, e.g. non-linear optics at the single-photon level.
Contact person – Prof. Dr. Morgan W. Mitchell – firstname.lastname@example.org
Quantum Nano-Optoelectronics, led by Prof. Dr. Frank Koppens, studies interactions between light and matter at extreme limits. Several unique and novel techniques are exploited to confine light to nano-meter lengths scales and study physical processes at ultra-fast timescales. Central in these studies are the rich variety of novel materials that are only one atom thick: graphene and 2d materials. These materials exhibit fascinating properties and in particular, by building heterostructures of these layered materials, completely new material systems can be created atom-by-atom: atomic lego! One of the more recent objectives is to marry the topological and many-body phenomena of 2d-material heterostructures with nano-photonics. The group also develops new concepts for photo-detection, imaging systems, optical modulation, nano-scale light processing and switching, as well as flexible and wearable health and fitness devices. We aim to build prototypes of these disruptive technologies, in collaboration with industry. The group works closely with the Graphene Flagship program and large industries worldwide.
Contact person – Prof. Dr. Frank Koppens
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As per COFUND guidelines, fellowship programmes will be based on individual-driven mobility, i.e., researchers will be able to freely choose a research topic fitting their individual needs.
The subject of the research project is expected to contribute to European competitiveness and to be in the general field of Photonics and/or its applications. Within these limitations, applicants can freely choose both their research topic and their host organisation, in the spirit of the ‘European Charter for Researchers’.