Miniaturised high-reliability lasers for Quantum Technologies

Lead Research Organisation: University of Strathclyde
Department Name: Physics

Abstract

Quantum Technologies have sparked interest in recent years for a wide range of exciting technology demonstrations. One example, the generation and manipulation of laser-cooled atoms, promises to augment the capabilities of atomic clocks, enable precision navigation units capable of operating without GPS support, and boost the sensitivity of magnetometers to allow new insights into brain-function. As a result, the UK government Industrial Strategy identifies Quantum Technologies as a field that will underpin future economic growth for the UK. While these demonstrations have illustrated the exciting potential of Quantum Technologies, it is now time to move the technology out of the lab and into real-world devices. At present, devices are often too large, heavy, power-hungry and expensive for this to be feasible. One of the key enabling technologies behind these applications is the narrow-linewidth laser.

This 4-year EngD project will take packaging techniques developed for the high-reliability, low-cost and volume-sensitive requirements of the telecoms market and apply these techniques to the lasers, optics and modulators required by Quantum Technologies. It will use scalable technology to integrate lasers and optical components at the mm-size scale and below to create compact laser sources with the required frequency and amplitude agility to fulfil the requirement of a cold-atom device. In particular it will integrate optical modulators, switches and microfabricated atomic reference cells using the type of techniques, that the industrial partner has a track record of mastering and bringing to market.

The student will be at the centre of bringing together the various optical technologies, defining the requirements and exploring the methods for integration as well as leading the testing and validation process. The resulting products will be tested by the student in cutting-edge Quantum Technology applications.

Publications

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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
EP/S022821/1 01/10/2019 31/03/2028
2262579 Studentship EP/S022821/1 01/09/2019 30/08/2023 Rachel Cannon