University of Southern Denmark

Description of the Institution

The University of Southern Denmark, with 26.000 students and over 4000 employees, is one of the three largest universities in Denmark and just celebrated its 50th birthday in 2016. The University offers a wide range of traditional disciplines as well as a broad selection of business and engineering studies. In recent years, the number of options available has been considerably expanded. The University focuses on areas such as communication, information technology, and biotechnology. Other areas of research are pursued through a number of national research centres at the University of Southern Denmark. The Department of Physics, Chemistry, and Pharmacy, located on the Odense campus of USD, conducts a wide range of interdisciplinary research beyond traditional boundaries, ranging from high-energy physics to biophysics.

Description of the Main Tasks and Participant’s Profile

The main task of USD is to implement Rydberg-interaction mediated optical nonlinearities in on-chip atomic ensembles. Our group has been at the forefront of experimental work on Rydberg-mediated photon-photon interaction over the last years. Our experiments so far have made use of free-space atomic ensembles, where we have realized the first single-photon transistor as well as the first free-space deterministic single-photon subtractor. For the on-chip systems developed within this project, we employ Rydberg “superatoms”, made up of thousands of individual Rydberg-blockaded atoms, to realize a model two-level system strongly coupled to on-chip resonators. We have recently demonstrated the strong coupling of a single superatom to a quantized light mode in free space. We continue to explore this rich system in free space in parallel to the main focus of this project, which is to transfer our expertise to chip-based atomic ensembles.
Besides our experience working with highly excited Rydberg atoms, this project will draw on our experience on trapping ultracold atoms close to macroscopic structures, e.g. atomchip based magnetic traps and optical trapping of atoms inside hollow-core photonic crystal fibres.

Leading Researchers 

  • Prof. Dr. Sebastian Hofferberth
    Principal Investigator

    PhotoCredit: ErBeStA / Sebastian Pucher