Kursussøgning, efter- og videreuddannelse – Københavns Universitet

Videresend til en ven Resize Print Bookmark and Share

Kursussøgning, efter- og videreuddannelse

Quantum Optics

Practical information
Study year 2016/2017
Block 1
Programme level Full Degree Master
Course responsible
  • Peter Lodahl (6-74776c69707448766a7136737d366c73)
Phone: 35 32 53 06
  • The Niels Bohr Institute
Course number: NFYK13006U

Course content

The course introduces quantum optics, i.e. the quantum mechanical aspects of the interaction between light and matter. The photon concept is introduced with the quantization of the free electromagnetic field and the role of boundary conditions is analyzed. Measurement of field correlation properties by photo-detection are discussed, and simple input/output systems are analyzed. Quantum properties of light, such as photon anti-bunching, two-photon interferometry, squeezed, and entangled states of light are discussed. Spontaneous emission is treated by semi-classical perturbation theory and by quantum optical methods forming the basis for a description of cavity quantum electrodynamics. Rabi oscillations for a 2-level emittter driven by a strong laser fields are analyzed and several applications of quantum optics in quantum communication and quantum measurements are discussed.

Learning outcome

The course aims to give a thorough introduction to the quantum mechanical description of the electromagnetic field and the interaction between light and matter. Specifically, after following this course students should be able to

  • quantize Maxwell’s equation in free space and identify useful mode functions in different geometries
  • analyze different photo-detection methods, like e.g. photon counting, homodyne and heterodyne detection, with emphasis on the measurement of non-classical correlations
  • explain and apply quantum mechanical input and output relations to beam splitters and interferometers,
  • analyze the interaction between atoms and the electromagnetic filed with wemi-classical and quantum optical methods,
  • account for coherent quantum optical phenomena such as Rabi osciallations.
  • understand properties and methods of generation of single photon, anti-bunched, squeezed and entangled states of light.


  • describe the quantum state of a field in different bases, e.g. coherent state and Fock state basis,
  • explain the concept of quantum coherence of light,
  • account for coherent quantum optical phenomena such as Rabi osciallations.
  • understand properties and methods of generation of single photon, anti-bunched, squeezed and entangled states of light.

This course will provide the students with a competent background for further and more advanced courses within quantum optics and for carrying out a M.Sc. project within the field. The topics covered in the course also have links to the fields of atomic physics, optics, condensed matter physics, and quantum field theory, and the course gives fundamental insight into the background of optical devices like, e.g., lasers.

Recommended prerequisites

The course requires prior knowledge of classical electrodynamics and waves together with elementary quantum mechanics. Prior studies in classical optics, laser physics and advanced quantum mechanics are very helpful, but not requested .

Sign up

As an exchange, guest and credit student - click here!

Continuing Education - click here!


Study Board of Physics, Chemistry and Nanoscience

Course type

Single subject courses (day)


Eugene Polzik, Phone: 35 32 54 24, e-mail: polzik@nbi.dk


1 block


---- SKEMA LINK ----

Teaching and learning methods

Lectures and Exercises


No restriction to number of participants




Selected chapters from "Introductory Quantum Optics", Christopher C. Gerry and Peter L. Knight, Cambridge University Press 2006 (second printing with corrections), additional material handed out at the lectures.


Category Hours
Lectures 28
Theory exercises 28
Exam 0,5
Preparation 149,5
English 206,0


Type of assessment

Oral examination, 25 min
5 minutes preparation time


Written aids allowed

Notes and literature allowed.

Marking scale

7-point grading scale

Criteria for exam assessment

The highest mark (12) is given for excellent exam performance that demonstrates full mastering of the above mentioned teaching goals with no or only small irrelevant gaps.
The grade 2 is given to a student who has achieved only minimally the course goals.

Censorship form

No external censorship
More internal examiners
Mere information om kurset
Er du BA- eller KA-studerende?
Er du bachelor- eller kandidat-studerende, så find dette kursus i kursusbasen for studerende:

Kursusinformation for indskrevne studerende