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Photonics

Photonics is the science that studies light and its creation, propagation, manipulation and interaction with matter. The result is a multidisciplinary technology with applications in communications, industry, nanotechnology, biology, medicine, etc. For decades, photonics has given way to endless applications that have a positive effect on our futures and on our day-to-day lives. To name a few examples, modern fibre-optics-based communications systems, optical diagnostic and therapeutic tools in medicine, laser-based means of production, optical sensors and metrology, and photovoltaic energy are photonic solutions to current problems.

.The doctoral programme in Photonics at the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC) is taught by The Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO) within the framework of the UPC’s Doctoral School. The ICFO is a research centre dedicated to the study of light-related sciences and technologies, and it has been accredited as a Severo Ochoa Centre of Excellence. Created in 2002 by the Government of Catalonia and the UPC, the ICFO also accepts ambitious sponsorship programmes financed by the Fundació Privada Cellex and Mir-Puig foundations, both in Barcelona. The Institute has a threefold mission: to conduct cutting-edge research, to transfer knowledge and technology and to train postgraduates, mainly doctoral degree holders. Currently, it is one of the leading centres in the world in its field.

. Theses revolve around four lines of research that make up the doctoral programme in Photonics: biomedical photonics, quantum optics, nonlinear optics and nano-photonics. These four lines of research prioritise photonic applications in healthcare, renewable energies and information technologies and they are carried out in long-term programmes and medium-term projects in a range of fields, including quantum information technologies, advanced screens, nano-photonic devices, graphene photonics, remote sensors, solar cells, optoelectronics, integrated optics, ultra-fast optics, super-resolution imaging techniques and therapeutic and diagnostic biomedical technologies, among others.

COORDINATOR

Artigas Garcia, David

CONTACT

The Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO)
Av. Carl Friedrich Gauss, 3
08860 Castelldefels

Tel.: +34 935 534 055
E-mail: training@icfo.es

Programme website

General information

Access profile

The doctoral programme in Photonics is designed for students with excellent records at the international level who wish to complete a doctoral project in one of the various fields related to photonics.

Regarding the ideal background for applicants, it should be noted that photonics is a far-reaching discipline and that the ICFO is made up of various research groups that work in a variety of branches of the photonic sciences. Thus, applicants to the doctoral programme in Photonics can have a range of backgrounds, from physics to electronics, electrical, material and telecommunications engineering, to mathematics, chemistry, biology, bioengineering and biophysics.

With regards to knowledge of languages, the ICFO is a research institute with a markedly international character, and as such, English is the common language. So, students admitted to the doctoral programme in Photonics must have a high level of both written and spoken English.

Regarding objectives, the doctoral programme in Photonics will admit both students pursuing futures in academia as well as those aiming to be leaders in knowledge and technology transfer in R&D in the business world.

Thus, desirable personal characteristics among applicants include having high potential and being motivated and demanding when it comes to completing quality projects at the highest international level.

Output profile

Doctoral candidates who complete a doctoral degree will have acquired the following competencies, which are needed to carry out quality research (Royal Decree 99/2011, of 28 January, which regulates official doctoral studies):

a) A systematic understanding of the field of study and a mastery of the research skills and methods related to the field.
b) An ability to conceive, design or create, put into practice and adopt a substantial process of research or creation.
c) An ability to contribute to pushing back the frontiers of knowledge through original research.
d) A capacity for critical analysis and an ability to assess and summarise new and complex ideas.
e) An ability to communicate with the academic and scientific community and with society in general as regards their fields of knowledge in the manner and languages that are typical of the international scientific community to which they belong.
f) An ability to foster scientific, technological, social, artistic and cultural progress in academic and professional contexts within a knowledge-based society.

The award of a doctoral degree must equip the graduate for work in a variety of settings, especially those requiring creativity and innovation. Doctoral graduates must have at least acquired the personal skills needed to:

a) Develop in contexts in which there is little specific information.
b) Find the key questions that must be answered to solve a complex problem.
c) Design, create, develop and undertake original, innovative projects in their field.
d) Work as part of a team and independently in an international or multidisciplinary context.
e) Integrate knowledge, deal with complexity and make judgements with limited information.
f) Offer criticism on and intellectually defend solutions.

Finally, with respect to competencies, doctoral students must:
a) have acquired advanced knowledge at the frontier of their discipline and demonstrated, in the context of internationally recognised scientific research, a deep, detailed and well-grounded understanding of theoretical and practical issues and scientific methodology in one or more research fields;
b) have made an original and significant contribution to scientific research in their field of expertise that has been recognised as such by the international scientific community;
c) have demonstrated that they are capable of designing a research project that serves as a framework for carrying out a critical analysis and assessment of imprecise situations, in which they are able to apply their contributions, expertise and working method to synthesise new and complex ideas that yield a deeper knowledge of the research context in which they work;
d) have developed sufficient autonomy to set up, manage and lead innovative research teams and projects and scientific collaborations (both national and international) within their subject area, in multidisciplinary contexts and, where appropriate, with a substantial element of knowledge transfer;
e) have demonstrated that they are able to carry out their research activity in a socially responsible manner and with scientific integrity;
f) have demonstrated, within their specific scientific context, that they are able to make cultural, social or technological advances and promote innovation in all areas within a knowledge-based society;
g) have demonstrated that they are able to participate in scientific discussions at the international level in their field of expertise and disseminate the results of their research activity to audiences of all kinds.

Number of places

30

Duration of studies and dedication regime

Duration
The maximum period of study for full-time doctoral studies is three years, counted from the date of admission to the programme to the date of submission of the doctoral thesis. The academic committee of the doctoral programme may authorise a doctoral candidate to pursue doctoral studies on a part-time basis. In this case, the maximum period of study is five years, counting from the date of admission to the programme to the date of submission of the doctoral thesis. For calculating these periods, the date of admission is considered to be the date of the first enrolment for tutorials, and the date of submission the moment in which the Doctoral School officially deposits the doctoral thesis.

For full-time doctoral candidates, the minimum period of study is two years, counted from the date of an applicant's admission to the programme until the date on which the doctoral thesis is deposited; for part-time doctoral candidates it is four years. When there are justified grounds for doing so, and the thesis supervisor and academic tutor have given their authorisation, doctoral candidates may request that the academic committee of their doctoral programme exempt them from the minimum period of study requirement.

The calculation of periods of study will not include periods of absence due to illness, pregnancy or any other reason provided for in the regulations in force. Students who find themselves in any of these circumstances must notify the academic committee of the doctoral programme, which, where appropriate, must inform the Doctoral School. Doctoral candidates may also temporarily withdraw from the programme for up to one year, and this period may be extended for an additional year. Doctoral candidates who wish to interrupt their studies must submit a justified request to the academic committee of the doctoral programme, which will decide whether or not to approve the request. Each programme will establish conditions for readmission to doctoral studies.

Extension
If full-time doctoral candidates have not applied to deposit their thesis by the end of the three-year period of study, the academic committee of the programme may authorise an extension of up to one year. In exceptional circumstances, a further one-year extension may be granted, subject to the conditions established by the corresponding doctoral programme. In the case of part-time doctoral candidates, an extension of two years may be authorised. In both cases, in exceptional circumstances a further one-year extension may be granted by the Doctoral School's Standing Committee, upon the submission of a reasoned application by the academic committee of the doctoral programme.

Dismissal from the doctoral programme
A doctoral candidate may be dismissed from a doctoral programme for the following reasons:

  • The doctoral candidate submitting a justified application to withdraw from the programme.
  • The maximum period of study and of extensions thereof ending.
  • The doctoral candidate not having enrolled every academic year (unless he or she has been authorised to temporarily withdraw).
  • The doctoral candidate failing two consecutive assessments.
  • The doctoral candidate having disciplinary proceedings filed against him or her that rule that he or she must be dismissed from the UPC.

Dismissal from the programme implies that doctoral candidates cannot continue studying at the UPC and the closing of their academic record. This notwithstanding, they may apply to the academic committee of the programme for readmission and the committee must reevaluate them in accordance with the criteria established in the regulations.

Enrollment aid

The ICFO and the professors of the doctoral programme in Photonics commit to providing all doctoral candidates with a grant/salary that allows them to concentrate full-time on their doctoral theses. This aid covers all enrolment costs.

Organization

COORDINATOR:
ACADEMIC COMMISSION OF THE PROGRAM:
STRUCTURAL UNITS:
  • Institute of Photonic Sciences (PROMOTORA)
Specific URL of the doctoral program:
http://phd.icfo.eu/

CONTACT:

The Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO)
Av. Carl Friedrich Gauss, 3
08860 Castelldefels

Tel.: +34 935 534 055
E-mail: training@icfo.es


Agreements with other institutions

The ICFO has collaboration agreements with a number of important businesses, including Leica Microsystems, Corning, Nikon-Izasa, the Sorigué group, Accelerate Diagnostics, SL, Fyla All-Fiber Ultrafast Lasers and GRAPHENEA, to name a few. The Institute also participates in networks of excellence (Eurobioimaging, Laserlab Europe, Corbel, etc.) and coordinates various projects for Graphene Flagship and Quantum Flagship under the EU’s Horizon 2020 programme.

Access, admission and registration

Access profile

The doctoral programme in Photonics is designed for students with excellent records at the international level who wish to complete a doctoral project in one of the various fields related to photonics.

Regarding the ideal background for applicants, it should be noted that photonics is a far-reaching discipline and that the ICFO is made up of various research groups that work in a variety of branches of the photonic sciences. Thus, applicants to the doctoral programme in Photonics can have a range of backgrounds, from physics to electronics, electrical, material and telecommunications engineering, to mathematics, chemistry, biology, bioengineering and biophysics.

With regards to knowledge of languages, the ICFO is a research institute with a markedly international character, and as such, English is the common language. So, students admitted to the doctoral programme in Photonics must have a high level of both written and spoken English.

Regarding objectives, the doctoral programme in Photonics will admit both students pursuing futures in academia as well as those aiming to be leaders in knowledge and technology transfer in R&D in the business world.

Thus, desirable personal characteristics among applicants include having high potential and being motivated and demanding when it comes to completing quality projects at the highest international level.

Access requirements

Applicants must hold a Spanish bachelor’s degree or equivalent and a Spanish master’s degree or equivalent, provided they have completed a minimum of 300 ECTS credits on the two degrees (Royal Decree 43/2015, of 2 February)

In addition, the following may apply:

  • Holders of an official degree awarded by a university in Spain or any other country in the European Higher Education Area, pursuant to the provisions of Article 16 of Royal Decree 1393/2007, of 29 October, which establishes official university course regulations, who have completed a minimum of 300 ECTS credits on official university degrees, of which at least 60 must be at the master's degree level.
  • Holders of an official Spanish bachelor’s degree comprising at least 300 credits, as provided for by EU regulations. Holder of degrees of this kind must complete bridging courses unless the curriculum of the bachelor’s degree in question included research training credits equivalent in value to those which would be earned on a master's degree.
  • Holders of an official university qualification who, having passed the entrance examination for specialised medical training, have completed at least two years of a training course leading to an official degree in a health-sciences specialisation.
  • Holders of a degree issued under a foreign education system. In these cases, homologation is not required, but the UPC must verify that the degree certifies a level of training equivalent to an official Spanish master's degree and qualifies the holder for admission to doctoral studies in the country where it was issued. Admission on this basis does not imply homologation of the foreign degree or its recognition for any purpose other than admission to doctoral studies.
  • Holders of a Spanish doctoral qualification issued under previous university regulations.
  • Note 1: Doctoral studies entrance regulations for holders of an undergraduate degree awarded before the introduction of the EHEA (CG 47/02 2014)

    Note 2: Governing Council Decision 64/2014, which approves the procedure and criteria for assessing the fulfilment of academic admission requirements for doctoral studies by holders of non-homologated foreign degrees (CG 25/03 2014)

Admission criteria and merits assessment

The application to the doctoral programme in Photonics can be found at http://jobs.icfo.eu/, where all interested students are sent. On this page, detailed information is published regarding the specific number of openings available for doctoral candidates at each moment and in each of the ICFO’s research groups.

As for selection criteria in particular, the body responsible for admission to the doctoral programme in Photonics will assess applications according to the following merit-based considerations and weights:

1. A high level of previous academic achievement: including the applicant’s academic transcript and other proof of grants and awards (55 %).
2. An advanced level of English: English level certificates will be considered, along with proof, in the applicant’s CV, of stays abroad and the level of conversation demonstrated in a personal interview (15 %).
3. High potential: via the applicant’s CV, proof of prior participation in research projects, scientific publications, student mobility programmes during previous studies and other related merits specified by the applicant. The appropriateness of the applicant’s previous studies for the proposed project will also be considered, as well as proof of extracurricular activities (entrepreneurial, community service and other related merits) and information provided in letters of recommendations (15 %).
4. A high level of motivation, which will be assessed based on a personal interview and the motives expressed in the student’s letter of introduction (15 %).

Finally, it is worth mentioning that during the admission process to the doctoral programme in Photonics, compliance with the principles of transparency, efficiency and international openness will be pursued as per the European Charter for Researchers and the European Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers. Thus, during this process, there will be no discrimination based on gender or nationality.

Training complements

No bridging courses will be required of those students coming from the following affiliated master’s programmes: Master’s programme in Photonics and the Erasmus Mundus Master’s programme in Photonics Engineering, Nanophotonics and Biophotonics.

For students who have completed master’s programmes in Photonics at other universities, their transcripts and the projects on which they will work will be assessed in order to determine, on a case-by-case basis, if specific bridging courses must be taken.

For students holding master’s degrees from other areas, their specific transcripts and the projects on which they will work will be assessed to determine, on a case-by-case basis, if specific bridging courses must be taken. If required, these students will have to take the following bridging courses in the master’s programme in Photonics offered by the UPC:
• Introduction to Photonics. Optics and Lasers (5 ECTS).
• Photonics Laboratory (5 ECTS).

Enrolment period for new doctoral students

Enrolment is open all year within the calendar established by the Doctoral School.

More information at the registration section for new doctoral students

Enrolment period

During the month of September.

More information at the general registration section

Monitoring and evaluation of the doctoral student

Procedure for the preparation and defense of the research plan

Doctoral candidates must submit a research plan, which will be included in their doctoral student activity report, before the end of the first year. The plan may be improved over the course of the doctoral degree. It must be endorsed by the tutor and the supervisor, and it must include the method that is to be followed and the aims of the research.

At least one of these annual assessments will include a public presentation and defence of the research plan and work done before a committee composed of three doctoral degree holders, which will be conducted in the manner determined by each academic committee. The examination committee awards a Pass or Fail mark. A Pass mark is a prerequisite for continuing on the doctoral programme. Doctoral candidates awarded a Fail mark must submit a new research plan for assessment by the academic committee of the doctoral programme within six months.

The committee assesses the research plan every year, in addition to all of the other activities in the doctoral student activity report. Doctoral candidates who are awarded two consecutive Fail marks for the research plan will be obliged to definitely withdraw from the programme.

If they change the subject of their thesis, they must submit a new research plan.

Formation activities

The doctoral programme in Photonics does not specify a minimum number for published articles, conferences attended or other activities. However, the programme’s Academic Committee does aim to ensure that each individual thesis meets the highest international standards before it will be allowed to be presented publicly.

Hereafter, details are provided about the educational activities included in the programme, their length and whether they are compulsory or optional:

• Tutorial (meetings with thesis supervisor), 288 hr/year, compulsory.
• Assessment of/follow-up with the doctoral student activity report and research plan, 4 hours, compulsory.
• Scientific seminars, 25 hr/year, optional.
• ICONS seminars (organised by doctoral candidates for doctoral candidates), 40 hr/year, optional.
• Coffee with prominent researchers, 2 hr/year, optional.
• Programme workshops, 1 day/year, mandatory participation at least once per year.
• Stays in international centres, 3 months, optional.
• Doctoral classes: Theory Lectures and Bio Lectures, 65 hr/year, optional.
• Outreach activities: 18 hours, compulsory.
• Training in technical skills: 5 hours per technique, optional.
• Training in information skills: 1.5 hours, optional.
• Effective oral presentations: 10 hours, optional.
• ICFO-ESADE, ‘From science to business’: 24 hours, optional.
• Introduction to drafting and administering patents: 7.5 hours, optional.
• Language courses (English, Catalan, Spanish): 40 hours, optional.
• Visits to installations and laboratories: 4 hr/visit, optional.

Procedure for assignment of tutor and thesis director

The academic committee of the doctoral programme assigns a thesis supervisor to each doctoral candidate when they are admitted or enrol for the first time, taking account of the thesis supervision commitment referred to in the admission decision.

The thesis supervisor will ensure that training activities carried out by the doctoral candidate are coherent and suitable, and that the topic of the candidate’s doctoral thesis will have an impact and make a novel contribution to knowledge in the relevant field. The thesis supervisor will also guide the doctoral candidate in planning the thesis and, if necessary, tailoring it to any other projects or activities undertaken. The thesis supervisor will generally be a UPC professor or researcher who holds a doctoral degree and has documented research experience. This includes PhD-holding staff at associated schools (as determined by the Governing Council) and UPC-affiliated research institutes (in accordance with corresponding collaboration and affiliation agreements). When thesis supervisors are UPC staff members, they also act as the doctoral candidate’s tutor.

PhD holders who do not meet these criteria (as a result of their contractual relationship or the nature of the institution to which they are attached) must be approved by the UPC Doctoral School's Standing Committee in order to participate in a doctoral programme as researchers with documented research experience.

The academic committee of the doctoral programme may approve the appointment of a PhD-holding expert who is not a UPC staff member as a candidate’s thesis supervisor. In such cases, the prior authorisation of the UPC Doctoral School's Standing Committee is required. A UPC staff member who holds a doctoral degree and has documented research experience must also be proposed to act as a co-supervisor, or as the doctoral candidate’s tutor if one has not been assigned.

A thesis supervisor may step down from this role if there are justified reasons (recognised as valid by the committee) for doing so. If this occurs, the academic committee of the doctoral programme will assign the doctoral candidate a new thesis supervisor.

Provided there are justified reasons for doing so, and after hearing any relevant input from the doctoral candidate, the academic committee of the doctoral programme may assign a new thesis supervisor at any time during the period of doctoral study.

If there are academic reasons for doing so (an interdisciplinary topic, joint or international programmes, etc.) and the academic committee of the programme gives its approval, an additional thesis supervisor may be assigned. Supervisors and co-supervisors have the same responsibilities and academic recognition.

The maximum number of supervisors of a doctoral thesis is two: a supervisor and a co-supervisor.

For theses carried out under a cotutelle agreement or as part of an Industrial Doctorate, if necessary and if the agreement foresees it this maximum number of supervisors may not apply. This notwithstanding, the maximum number of supervisors belonging to the UPC is two.

More information at the PhD theses section

Permanence

The academic committee of the programme may authorise an extension of up to one year for full-time doctoral candidates who have not applied to deposit their thesis by the end of the three-year period of study, in the terms outlined in the Academic Regulations for Doctoral Studies of the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya. In the case of part-time candidates, an extension of two years may be authorised. In both cases, in exceptional circumstances a further one-year extension may be granted by the Doctoral School's Standing Committee, upon the submission of a reasoned application by the academic committee of the doctoral programme.

A doctoral candidate may be dismissed from a doctoral programme for the following reasons:

  • The doctoral candidate submitting a justified application to withdraw from the programme.
  • The maximum period of study and of extensions thereof ending.
  • The doctoral candidate not having enrolled every academic year (unless he or she has been authorised to temporarily withdraw).
  • The doctoral candidate failing two consecutive assessments.
  • The doctoral candidate having disciplinary proceedings filed against him or her that rule that he or she must be dismissed from the UPC.

Dismissal from the programme implies that doctoral candidates cannot continue studying at the UPC and the closing of their academic record. This notwithstanding, they may apply to the academic committee of the programme for readmission and the committee must reevaluate them in accordance with the criteria established in the regulations.

International Mention

The doctoral degree certificate may include International Doctorate mention. In this case, the doctoral candidate must meet the following requirements:

a) During the period of study leading to the award of the doctoral degree, the doctoral candidate must have spent at least three months at a respected higher education institution or research centre outside Spain to complete courses or do research work. The stays and activities carried out must be endorsed by the thesis supervisor and authorised by the academic committee of the programme. The candidate must provide a certifying document issued by the person responsible for the research group of the body or bodies where the stay or activity was completed. This information will be added to the doctoral student’s activity report.
b) Part of the thesis (at least the summary and conclusions) must be written and presented in one of the languages commonly used for science communication in the relevant field of knowledge, which must not be an official language of Spain. This rule does not apply to stays and reports in Spanish or to experts from Spanish-speaking countries.
c) At least two PhD-holding experts belonging to a higher education institution or research centre outside Spain must have issued officially certified reports on the thesis.
d) The thesis examination committee must have included at least one PhD-holding expert from a higher education or research institution outside Spain who was not responsible for the candidate’s stay abroad (point a) above).
e) The thesis defence must have taken place on UPC premises or, in the case of joint programmes, at the location specified in the collaboration agreement.

Learning resources

Beyond the support teams and services available at the University, the ICFO’s management team is made up of highly specialised personnel in various fields; thus, they are able to provide specific hands-on assistance to candidates in the doctoral programme in Photonics. Specifically, the ICFO has the following:

• Human Resources and Education Unit: procedures related to academics, contracts, permissions with the foreigner’s office, accommodations, predoctoral aid for carrying out doctoral studies and mobility aid for doctoral students.
• Technology and Knowledge Transfer Unit: https://www.icfo.eu/lang/industry
• ICFO Projects Unit: in charge of finding potential financing, counselling researchers when preparing proposals and filing applications.

Additionally, candidates in the doctoral programme in Photonics have access to the NanoFabrication Laboratory, the Super-resolution Light Microscopy and Nanoscopy Service, the Advanced Engineering Laboratory, the Biology Laboratory and the Chemistry and Post-Processing laboratories: https://www.icfo.eu/lang/research/facilities

Doctoral Theses

List of authorized thesis for defense

No hi ha registres per mostrar.

Last update: 27/02/2021 06:03:59.

List of lodged theses

  • PADRÓN BRITO, MARÍA AUXILIADORA: Quantum nonlinear optics at the single-photon level with cold Rydberg atoms
    Author: PADRÓN BRITO, MARÍA AUXILIADORA
    Thesis file: (contact the Doctoral School to confirm you have a valid doctoral degree and to get the link to the thesis)
    Programme: DOCTORAL DEGREE IN PHOTONICS
    Department: Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO)
    Mode: Normal
    Deposit date: 19/02/2021
    Reading date: pending
    Reading time: pending
    Reading place: pending
    Thesis director: DE RIEDMATTEN, HUGUES
    Committee:
         PRESIDENT: BROWAEYS, ANTOINE
         SECRETARI: TARRUELL, LETICIA
         VOCAL: HENNRICH, MARKUS THOMAS
    Thesis abstract: Photons are good candidates for carrying quantum information because they are very stable particles: they interact weaklywith the medium and barely with each other. However, this has drawbacks when you want to process the informationbecause, in this case, it is preferable to have photon-photon interactions. For example, for applications in quantum repeaters,such interactions would allow deterministic Bell state measurements, increasing the entanglement distribution rate betweentwo remote nodes. Getting two photons to interact with each other efficiently requires mapping them into a nonlinear mediumat the single-photon level, that is, a medium that reacts differently when it interacts with a single photon than when it doeswith two. Such strong nonlinearity has been demonstrated with Rydberg atoms, which are atoms excited to a state with a highprincipal quantum number.In this thesis we have performed nonlinear quantum optics experiments using an ensemble of cold Rydberg atoms, wherewe have studied the properties of the quantum light emitted by these atoms. First, we demonstrated nonlinearities at thesingle-photon level. To reach this stage, we made several improvements to the previous experimental setup available in thegroup, of which the implementation of a dipole trap was especially relevant. We evidence quantum nonlinearity by measuringphoton antibunching for the transmitted light after interacting with the Rydberg state under electromagnetically inducedtransparency (EIT). We also showed the generation of single photons on-demand after storing weak coherent states of lightpulses as collective Rydberg excitations.Then, we studied the variation of the light statistic throughout the output pulse after propagating through the medium asRydberg polaritons, which are superposition states of light and Rydberg excitations. We showed that the properties at thebeginning and the end of the pulse were different from those of the steady state. In particular, the light detected after the inputpulse was abruptly turned off gave much stronger suppression of two-photon events. Then, we investigated how to exploitthis effect to generate single photons on demand. To do this, we analyzed the quality of the single photons detected at theend of the pulse as a function of the detection probability and compared the results with those obtained by storing the inputpulse as collective Rydberg excitations. We showed that the photons were generated more efficiently when increasing thedetection window at the cost of deteriorating the single photons statistics.Finally, we investigated the indistinguishability of the photons emitted by our Rydberg atomic ensemble, a crucial property forusing Rydberg atoms as nodes in quantum networks. We also compared the single photons generated after storage underEIT conditions with those obtained using a two-photon Raman excitation to the Rydberg state. We measured theindistinguishability by making them interfere with weak coherent states of light in a Hong-Ou-Mandel experiment. And weshowed that, although we obtained better photon statistics under EIT conditions, the indistinguishability from those obtainedwith Raman excitation was significantly higher.
  • PALOMBO BLASCETTA, NICOLA: Deterministic control of nanoantenna and single-photon emitter interaction at the nanoscale
    Author: PALOMBO BLASCETTA, NICOLA
    Thesis file: (contact the Doctoral School to confirm you have a valid doctoral degree and to get the link to the thesis)
    Programme: DOCTORAL DEGREE IN PHOTONICS
    Department: Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO)
    Mode: Normal
    Deposit date: 24/02/2021
    Reading date: pending
    Reading time: pending
    Reading place: pending
    Thesis director: VAN HULST, NIEK
    Committee:
         PRESIDENT: TONINELLI, COSTANZA
         SECRETARI: EFETOV, DMITRI K.
         VOCAL: FRIMMER, MARTIN
    Thesis abstract: Deterministic control of nanoantenna and single-photon emitter interaction at the nanoscale220600 220919 221100 220900The study of light-matter interaction at the nanoscale is a very promising field of research, providing the possibility to manipulate theinteraction with single quantum systems like single atoms, molecules, atomic defects or quantum dots, systems that can emit onephoton at a time, so-called single-photon emitters (SPEs). From the fundamental point of view, light-matter interaction at thenanoscale allows the exploration of the ultrasmall, providing superresolution and decomposition of the ensemble. From the appliedpoint of view, it offers the possibility to manipulate SPEs and control their optical properties for important applications in the field ofultrasensitive detectors development and quantum communications.Yet, the ultrasmall SPEs have a relatively small absorption cross-section, making their interaction with light quite weak. In fact, evenin a tight excitation focus at room temperature they only absorb one photon over ten million. Additionally, in many cases suchemitters have a low quantum efficiency, making them hard to detect. Furthermore, in many cases, they are optically quite fragile andtend to blink and bleach, thus no high illumination powers can be used in order to increase their emission of light.Fortunately, nanoantennas allow to confine light well below the diffraction limit, and through efficient coupling can increase theeffective absorption cross-section of SPEs, allowing effective excitation and high-resolution imaging. Moreover, nanoantennascoupled to SPEs modify the local mode density, shortening the emitters excited state lifetime, increasing the internal quantumefficiency, resulting in bright SPEs.In this thesis, we study the interaction of light and matter at the nanoscale through deterministic coupling between a SPE and ananoantenna, using nanometer scale control. We use scanning probe technology to scan a single nanoantenna in close proximityto a single emitter. First, we show a novel near-field probe based on a dipolar nanoantenna design that provides a higher opticaland topographical resolution compared to the state-of-the-art. Next, we apply such novel antenna probes to the study of recentlydiscovered single atomic defects in hBN, ultrastable SPEs in an atomically thin layer, ideal for nanoscale control. Despite the hBNhigh refractive index, and the low absorption cross-section of the defect, we provide high-resolution imaging of single hBN emissioncenters, enhanced by the hot-spot of our antenna probe. The controlled interaction is demonstrated by lifetime mapping, showing ashorter lifetime for the coupled emitter-antenna case. Finally, we develop a novel light confinement mechanism based on localsubwavelength field suppression by near field interference: generating ¿cold¿ spots. We obtain such dark spots by antenna phaseengineering through length control. We image optically for the first time and with high resolution the cold spots, and measurefluorescence lifetime reduction, inhibition of emission for the coupled system, despite the losses of the metallic nanoantenna.Such low-intensity sub-wavelength dark spots provide novel tools for high-resolution imaging of SPEs with ultralow intensity anda nanoscaling of advanced super-resolution techniques like MINFLUX.
  • URGELL FLORES, CARLES: New phenomena in high-quality suspended nanotube devices
    Author: URGELL FLORES, CARLES
    Thesis file: (contact the Doctoral School to confirm you have a valid doctoral degree and to get the link to the thesis)
    Programme: DOCTORAL DEGREE IN PHOTONICS
    Department: Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO)
    Mode: Normal
    Deposit date: 25/02/2021
    Reading date: pending
    Reading time: pending
    Reading place: pending
    Thesis director: BACHTOLD, ADRIAN
    Committee:
         PRESIDENT: KONTOS, TAKIS
         SECRETARI: CHANG, DARRICK
         VOCAL: STEELE, GARY
    Thesis abstract: Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have attracted the attention of the scientific community since their discovery in the 90s. They arean excellent material for the development of research fields as diverse as nanomechanics or quantum transport. Nanotubemechanical resonators are endowed with exceptional properties, including extremely small mass, ultra narrow crosssection,and operation over a large frequency range from 10 kHz to 10 GHz. They are also fantastic sensors of both massadsorption and forces.Its electric transport properties are remarkably the long ballistic transport of charge carriers, strong electron-electroninteraction, and the important role of the spin and valley degrees of freedom. It is possible to observe a wide range ofquantum transport phenomena ranging from single-electron tunneling to Kondo physics and Fabry-Pérot interference. Itshould be noted that the electrical transport and mechanical motion of suspended nanotubes can be coupled by a largeamount.In the first part of this thesis, we present an advanced ultra-sensitive fabrication method that allows us to build andfunctionalize a nanotube cantilever for optical measurements. We grow a platinum particle at the end of the nanotube in orderto increase laser reflection. For this, we track the material deposition on the cantilever through the electromechanicalcoupling with the electron beam during the process.Next, we show electron transport measurements in high-quality devices with high transmission. While high-temperaturemeasurements indicate electron-electron correlations, low-temperature transport characteristics point towards singleparticleFabry-Perot interference. We observe this effect both by modifying the temperature and by tuning the source-drainvoltage. This effect is attributed to the interplay between fluctuations and quantum interactions in a correlated Fabry-Pérotregime.In the last part, we show that it is possible to couple the mechanical movement of the CNT to the electron transport. Byapplying an electron current through the system, we can either cool or amplify the mechanical motion of the eigenmode. Wecooled the nanoresonator down to 4.6+-2.0 quanta of vibration. The instabilities present in electron transport measurementsare attributed to self-oscillation induced by the backaction amplification. These effects have an electrothermal origin. Thismethod can be used in the future to cool NEMS into the quantum regime.

Last update: 27/02/2021 06:03:16.

List of defended theses by year

  • AKGÜL, MEHMET ZAFER: Environmentally friendly nanocrystals synthesized and processed in ambient conditions for solution-processed solar cells
    Author: AKGÜL, MEHMET ZAFER
    Thesis file: (contact the Doctoral School to confirm you have a valid doctoral degree and to get the link to the thesis)
    Programme: DOCTORAL DEGREE IN PHOTONICS
    Department: Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO)
    Mode: Normal
    Reading date: 11/02/2021
    Thesis director: KONSTANTATOS, GERASIMOS

    Committee:
         PRESIDENT: GAPONIK, NIKOLAI
         SECRETARI: PRUNERI, VALERIO
         VOCAL: TRIMMEL, GREGOR
    Thesis abstract: Due to the continuously increasing energy demand and the environmental concerns about climate changes raised by international community, alternative energy resources have been put under intense investigation for the past decade. As a consequence, different technologies have been proposed, photovoltaics being a promising one among them. Till now, different structures and methods have been employed to fabricate photovoltaics for energy production. Traditionally, vacuum-based deposition methods have been used to form the stacks required for proper photovoltaic operation. Triggered by the advancements in colloidal synthesis methods, thin films of colloidal semiconductor nanocrystals (CNCs) have gained tremendous attention as cheap substitutes for vacuum-deposited layers. Up to date, various colloidal synthesis methods have been developed to produce semiconductor nanocrystals for applications in photovoltaics. Thanks to the high degree of controllability and high material quality, hot injection methods have been the way-to-go for the past decades. However, the application of CNC films in large-scale photovoltaics has been delayed due to the synthesis constraints originating from hot injection methods itself.In this work, we demonstrate that it is possible to eliminate the need for air-free techniques by careful selection of the precursors and oxygen-aware design of reaction conditions. We use the semiconducting compound silver bismuth sulfide (AgBiS2) as the prototype material to demonstrate the easiness and efficiency of the method. This semiconducting compound is selected as the prototype material thanks to its attractive optical properties for photovoltaics and the environmentally friendly nature of the constituent elements. Solar cells fabricated using CNCs synthesized at room temperature have yielded a power conversion efficiency of 5.5 %, demonstrating the promising potential of the method. The application of the method in the synthesis of AgBiS2 CNCs results in a cost reduction of at least 60 % compared to the previous studies reporting similar photovoltaics-grade AgBiS2 CNCs. Another important challenge in employing hot injection methods is the scalability. Due to the difficulties in maintaining the thermal fluctuations within the reaction volume low and in the maintenance of inert atmosphere inside the reaction vessel, hot injection methods impose an inherent scale constraint on the synthesis. On the other hand, with the elimination of scale constraint by the use of an ambient condition synthesis method, the requirement for high temperature reaction and chemically inert reaction environment is eliminated, enabling us to achieve large-scale volume production of CNCs. This, in turn, can lower the production cost of CNCs further, hence the cost of photovoltaics that are based on CNCs. In addition, we show that the ambient condition method can be adapted for the synthesis of another metal chalcogenide, namely silver bismuth selenide CNCs (AgBiSe2) with an extended absorption spectrum further into the near infrared down to ~ 0.9 eV. The resulting AgBiSe2 CNC solar cells achieved a preliminary efficiency up to 2.6 %. Also, thanks to the structural similarity of these two compounds, the two methods that are developed for the synthesis of AgBiS2 and AgBiSe2 CNCs are combined and optimized to obtain alloyed quaternary AgBiSSe CNCs as a facile means of bandgap tuning in silver bismuth chalcogenide semiconductor family. The formation of AgBiSSe CNCs are verified through optical and structural characterization methods to show the formation of quaternary phase and also the phase purity of the obtained product. Overall, it is shown that the proposed ambient condition synthesis method is capable of providing photovoltaics-grade RoHS-compliant materials at a lower cost and higher throughput compared to the hot-injection based methods, opening a novel way for low-cost environmentally friendly photovoltaics.

Last update: 27/02/2021 06:02:46.

Theses related publications

Research projects

START DATEEND DATEACTIVITYFINANCING ENTITY
01/01/201831/12/2020Células solares con contactos posteriores basadas en substratos delgados de silicio cristalinoAGENCIA ESTATAL DE INVESTIGACION
01/12/201727/12/2017Prestación de servicios COSENTINOCOSENTINO RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
01/01/201731/12/2021ICREA ACADEMIA 2016-04INSTITUCIO CAT DE RECERCA I
01/01/201731/12/20192017 SGR 1400 Nonlinear and Quantum Photonics GroupAGAUR. Agència de Gestió d'Ajuts Universitaris i de Recerca
17/06/201617/06/2016Procedimiento para la fabricación de resonadores esferoidales sobre un substrato monocristalino.
01/06/201631/05/2019Reducció energètica i flexibilitat en edificis en rehabilitacióACC10
01/01/201631/12/2018Explotación de las propiedades de las ondas de DyakonovMinisterio de Ciencia e Innovación
01/10/201530/09/2016BEQUES DOCTORAT FUND.LA CAIXA 2015-2FUNDACIO LA CAIXA
01/03/201528/02/2018Células y módulos de alta eficiencia basadas en el silicio negro y técnicas de eliminación de defectosMIN DE ECONOMIA Y COMPETITIVIDAD
01/01/201531/12/2017Células solares de silicio cristalino con contactos posteriores basadas en el procesado láser de capas dieléctricasMIN DE ECONOMIA Y COMPETITIVIDAD

Teaching staff and research groups

Research groups

UPC groups:

Research projects

START DATEEND DATEACTIVITYFINANCING ENTITY
01/01/201831/12/2020Células solares con contactos posteriores basadas en substratos delgados de silicio cristalinoAGENCIA ESTATAL DE INVESTIGACION
01/12/201727/12/2017Prestación de servicios COSENTINOCOSENTINO RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
01/01/201731/12/2021ICREA ACADEMIA 2016-04INSTITUCIO CAT DE RECERCA I
01/01/201731/12/20192017 SGR 1400 Nonlinear and Quantum Photonics GroupAGAUR. Agència de Gestió d'Ajuts Universitaris i de Recerca
17/06/201617/06/2016Procedimiento para la fabricación de resonadores esferoidales sobre un substrato monocristalino.
01/06/201631/05/2019Reducció energètica i flexibilitat en edificis en rehabilitacióACC10
01/01/201631/12/2018Explotación de las propiedades de las ondas de DyakonovMinisterio de Ciencia e Innovación
01/10/201530/09/2016BEQUES DOCTORAT FUND.LA CAIXA 2015-2FUNDACIO LA CAIXA
01/03/201528/02/2018Células y módulos de alta eficiencia basadas en el silicio negro y técnicas de eliminación de defectosMIN DE ECONOMIA Y COMPETITIVIDAD
01/01/201531/12/2017Células solares de silicio cristalino con contactos posteriores basadas en el procesado láser de capas dieléctricasMIN DE ECONOMIA Y COMPETITIVIDAD

Quality

The Validation, Monitoring, Modification and Accreditation Framework (VSMA Framework) for official degrees ties the quality assurance processes (validation, monitoring, modification and accreditation) carried out over the lifetime of a course to two objectives—the goal of establishing coherent links between these processes, and that of achieving greater efficiency in their management—all with the overarching aim of improving programmes.

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