Non-equilibrium universality and self organisation in Rydberg quantum systems

Job type: 

Application deadline: 

Friday, January 31, 2020

PhD position in experimental quantum physics with Rydberg atoms
in the Exotic Quantum Matter Group at the University of Strasbourg, France

We are seeking a motivated doctoral student to join our team and carry out experimental
research on "Non-equilibrium universality and self organisation in Rydberg quantum
. The PhD is fully funded for three years as part of the Giant Interactions in
Rydberg Systems network [], and involves exceptionally strong collaborations
with theory.

Throughout nature, complex systems are found to exhibit remarkably similar scale-invariant properties that are exceedingly difficult to explain from microscopic principles. Recently we discovered self-organisation and the emergence of scale-invariant behaviour in systems of ultracold atoms excited to Rydberg states, providing one of the first clean experimental realizations of "self-organised criticality" (SOC). In this project we will develop the technology for controlling ultracold atoms and explore quantum dynamics in poorly-understood regimes. We will also address how self-organising dynamics might be harnessed to engineer complex quantum states and process quantum information.

Strasbourg is a historic, international and academic city situated alongside the romantic Rhine river on the French-German border. Beyond it's world class research facilities, the City of Strasbourg also gives ample of opportunities to live life at its fullest, with almost 50,000 students (20% international students), cultural events and festivals all year round. The Exotic Quantum Matter group at the University of Strasbourg experimentally explores quantum phenomena using laser cooling and trapping of atoms, in particular their highly excited (Rydberg) states. We are especially interested in developing novel applications of ultracold quantum systems, including quantum simulation of exotic states of matter, non-equilibrium physics, quantum sensing, chemistry, biophysics and computing.