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Durham University

Department of Physics

PHYS4121 Atoms, Lasers and Qubits (2018/19)

Details of the module's prerequisites, learning outcomes, assessment and contact hours are given in the official module description in the Faculty Handbook - follow the link above. A detailed description of the module's content is given below, together with book lists and a link to the current library catalogue entries. For an explanation of the library's categorisation system see https://www.dur.ac.uk/physics/students/library/

Content

Laser Physics

Dr K.J. Weatherill

18 lectures in Michaelmas Term

Textbooks:

Required: Laser Physics, Simon Hooker and Colin Webb (OUP)
Additional: Laser Fundamentals, William T. Silfvast (CUP, 2nd Ed.)
Additional: Principles of Lasers, Orazio Svelto (Plenum, 4th Ed.)
Additional: Atomic Physics, Christopher J. Foot (OUP)
Additional: Modern Classical Optics, Geoffrey Brooker (OUP)
Additional: Laser Spectroscopy, W. Demtroder (Springer, 3rd Ed.)


Syllabus: Definition of a laser. Atom-light interactions. Absorption, spontaneous and stimulated emission. Line broadening mechanisms and emission linewidth. Population inversion and gain. Laser oscillator: cavity basics and threshold; gain saturation and output power. Population inversion in 3 and 4-level systems. Laser pumping with case studies of specific laser systems. Cavity modes and cavity stability. Gaussian beams. Cavity effects: single frequency operation. Cavity effects: Q switching and mode locking. Laser spectroscopy and optical frequency combs. Second harmonic generation and sum frequency generation. Case studies of laser applications.

Quantum Information and Computing

Prof I.G. Hughes and Prof C.S. Adams

18 lectures in Epiphany Term

Textbooks:

Additional: Quantum Computation and Quantum Information, M.A. Nielsen and I.L. Chuang (CUP)
Additional: A Short Introduction to Quantum Compilation, M.L. Bellac (CUP)
Additional: Atomic Physics, C.J. Foot (OUP)
Additional: Quantum Information, S. Barnett (OUP)

Syllabus: Manipulation of qubits: Limits of classical computing. Feynman’s insight. Quantum mechanics revision. Projection operators. Pauli matrices. Single-qubit operations: Resonant field, the Rabi solution. The Bloch sphere. The Ramsey technique. Two-qubit states. Tensor products. Correlations. Entanglement. Bell states. Two-qubit gates. The CNOT gate. Physical Realizations: The DiVincenzo criteria. Controlling the centre-of mass motion of atoms – laser cooling. Controlling the internal states of atoms. Trapping and manipulating single atoms. Rydberg states. Decoherence. Case studies of contemporary Quantum Information Processing.

Revision

2 lectures in Easter Term, one by each lecturer

Teaching methods

Lectures: 2 one-hour lectures per week

Problem exercises: see https://www.dur.ac.uk/physics/students/problems/