Openings

BIPHOTONS FOR NONLINEAR IMAGING

Supervisor: Matteo Clerici; Keywords: Quantum optics, spectroscopy, imaging

We are looking for a talented and passion-driven candidate to fulfil a 3.5-years PhD Scholarship at the University of Glasgow. The ideal candidate is a Physics or Engineering graduate, with 2:1 or higher (or equivalent) degree. The PhD student will work in the UNO (Ultrafast Nonlinear Optics) group, led by Dr Clerici, will have access to state-of-the-art research infrastructures, and will enjoy the active student life of the Glasgow West End.

Nonlinear imaging delivered transformative results to our science and technology. One example is multiphoton microscopy, which is used to study biological structures with 3D resolution. Now, quantum optics may deliver yet another improvement to our ability to look at the microscopic world. With this PhD, you will discover how biphoton fields can enhance nonlinear imaging. It has been predicted that the temporal correlations between twin photons generated by parametric down-conversion can significantly increase the two-photon absorption cross-section. In the presence of a resonant nonlinearity, such as two-photon absorption in a fluorophore or a semiconductor, biphoton states are absorbed with cross-section orders of magnitude higher than classical radiation at the same wavelength. This concept is currently being tested experimentally and is one of the most exciting topics in quantum imaging also due to the possibility it entails of improving bioimaging. This PhD project expands on such concept exploring the impact of biphotons on the real, rather than the imaginary part of optical nonlinearities. The down-converted field is composed only of photon pairs (biphotons) that are strongly correlated in space and time. For this reason, under proper conditions, they effectively behave as a single particle for the light-matter interaction. As a consequence, they can be absorbed with a cross-section approaching that of one-photon processes yet being in a transparent spectral region of the material. The very same concept is expected to hold also for other two-photon processes, such as those underpinning parametric interactions in third-order nonlinear media, such as self and cross-phase modulation, parametric amplification, and Raman scattering. With this PhD project, you will investigate the biphoton-induced enhancement of Kerr nonlinearities for nonlinear imaging applications.

Application. The Scholarship covers the student fees for UK residents (see EPSRC definition) and provides a stipend at the UKRI/EPSRC rate (https://www.ukri.org/skills/funding-for-research-training/) for 3.5 years. To apply, please send your CV and a brief personal statement to matteo.clerici@glasgow.ac.uk. After a pre-selection, successful applicants will be interviewed (either in person or via conference call). The Scholarship is available from October 1st, 2020. We encourage you to get in contact with us as soon as possible.

This is an exciting opportunity to develop complementary skills in optics and photonics sponsored by QuantIC, the Quantum Hub for Imaging (https://quantic.ac.uk/). Do not hesitate to contact us (matteo.clerici@glasgow.ac.uk). We are happy to discuss over the email or phone your questions.