PhD studentship on quantum acoustics (V34.3782)

PhD studentship on quantum acoustics

The Photonics and Semiconductor Nanophysics group at the Eindhoven University of Technology has an open PhD student position in the field of quantum acoustics.
Faculteit Technische Natuurkunde


The Photonics and Semiconductor Nanophysics group at the Eindhoven University of Technology (The Netherlands, has an open PhD student position in the field of quantum acoustics.

Goal and background

Atoms and photons have long been used to investigate quantum physics and its application to quantum information processing. A new quantum bit is now appearing on the horizon of science and technology: The phonon. High-frequency phonons in solids have long coherence times, can be controlled with nanopatterned structures, and interact with many other quantum systems. For this reason they represent ideal candidates for quantum interfaces, among others. The first experiments and protocols involving single phonons are being deployed [1,2], opening the way to the new scientific field of "quantum acoustics". However, similarly to photons, the equispaced energy level structure makes nonlinear interactions and the controlled creation of quantum states difficult. This can be circumvented by using intrinsically nonlinear two-level systems in order to mediate nonlinear interactions between phonons. Our group has proposed a scheme to realize a controllable interaction between phonons and solid-state two-level systems [3]. In the framework of a newly funded national program on Quantum Acoustics, we intend to experimentally investigate this and other approaches to the quantum control of phonons in the solid-state. This would have large impact on the development of the field and of its application within quantum information processing.

Project description

The selected candidate will perform fundamental research at the interface between nanophotonics, quantum optics and optomechanics. He/she will conceive semiconductor nano-optomechanical structures based on photonic crystals with embedded quantum dots and will use them to experimentally investigate the radiative emission of excitons in the quantum dots within a nanomechanical cavity. Together with collaborators in AMOLF and Delft University, we specifically aim at demonstrating controlled exciton-phonon interaction and the emission of single phonons from quantum dots. The project will be co-supervised by Prof. A. Fiore (TU/e) and Prof. Ewold Verhagen (AMOLF).


We welcome applications from candidates with a Master degree in physics with top marks and with a background and interest in optics or photonics. Candidates must prove a strong attitude towards experimental physics and the drive and capacity to tackle different aspects of a complex problem with large independence. Candidates with a Material Science or Electrical Engineering background will not be considered.


We offer:

  • A full-time appointment for four years with a gross monthly salary growing from € 2.325,-- (first year) to € 2.972,-- (fourth year), in line with the Collective Agreement for Dutch Universities;
  • Additionally, 8% holiday and 8,3% end-of-year allowance;
  • An attractive package of fringe benefits, i.e., a personal development programme for PhD students, excellent sport facilities and the possibility of child care on the campus.

Informatie en sollicitatie

The application should include a CV, a list of exams with marks, a letter of motivation and the name and contact information of two academic references. 

If interested, please use the 'apply for this job'-button on this page. Please keep in mind: you can upload only 5 documents up to 2 MB each.

Candidates are urged to apply as soon as possible, as selection will start immediately. 

[1] E. Verhagen et al., Quantum-coherent coupling of a mechanical oscillator to an optical cavity, Nature 482, 63 (2012)

[2] R. Riedinger et al., Remote quantum entanglement between two micromechanical oscillators, Nature 556, 473 (2018)

[3] M. Cotrufo et al., Coherent Atom-Phonon Interaction through Mode Field Coupling in Hybrid Optomechanical Systems, Phys. Rev. Lett. 118, 133603 (2017)