University of Nottingham

Description of the Institution

The University of Nottingham is one of the top 10 research universities in UK with over 44.000 students and 9000 members of staff. It is a member of the Russell Group of Elite Universities. The University last year won research awards worth over £125M and administers collaborative research programs with over 300 research and industrial partners. In the recent national Research Assessment Exercise (RAE 2014) the School of Physics and Astronomy – in which the proposed research will be conducted – was ranked top third throughout all UK physics departments. The University of Nottingham hosts the Midlands Ultracold Atom Research Centre (MUARC) and the Centre for the Mathematics and Theoretical Physics of Quantum Non-equilibrium Systems (CQNE). Institutions of the University are part of the national hub for Quantum Technologies on quantum sensors. Through the Midlands Physics Alliance (MPAGs), a centre for postgraduate training, the University of Nottingham offers an ideal platform for the training of PhD students linking the Universities Nottingham, Birmingham and Warwick.

Description of Main Tasks and Participants’ Profile

U Nottingham Experiment (UNOTE) led by Lucia Hackermueller

UNOTE couples cold ground state atoms to chip guided light using optical dipole traps based on guided light fields, demonstrate an optical circulator on the chip and show on-chip non-destructive single-photon detection. In addition, UNOTE contributes, especially through knowledge transfer to USD as well as via discussions for theoretical trapping optimization. Furthermore, UNOTE is involved via discussions on the chip layout, chip optimisation and chip-testing results and ensures close collaboration with UROS, UVIE and FBH. UNOTE has wide experience with preparing cold and ultracold ensembles in optical dipole traps of various forms and has recently started work on small ensembles coupled to optical single mode fibres and gained wide experience on trapping and detecting cold atomic ensembles close to transparent glass chips. In this setup and a parallel BEC setup, we are also working with non-destructive imaging (Faraday imaging) of small atomic ensembles. Finally, our group has gained experience with probing and manipulating cold atoms in a lambda-type configuration, as required, e.g., for electromagnetically-induced transparency. In this way, suitably controlled ensembles of cold atoms can, for example, be used as photon-number-resolving detectors.

Leading Researchers 

  • Dr. Lucia Hackermüller
    Principal Investigator

    PhotoCredit: ErBeStA / Sebastian Pucher