Coulomb crystals are an interesting system for scaling trapped-ion precision spectroscopy to multiple particles. They are the basis for a new generation of ion optical clocks with improved stability and thus higher time resolution in fundamental physics tests and applications such as relativistic geodesy. At the same time, the highly controlled environment in state-of-the-art ion traps allows for 10-19-level systematic uncertainties in such many-body spectroscopic references [Keller et al., PRA 99, 013405 (2019)].
Description of work
We use linear 115In+/172Yb+ ion chains for precision spectroscopy. Yb+ is used in searches for physics beyond the Standard Model [publication in prep.] and tests of the Einstein Equivalence Principle [Dreissen et al., Nat. Commun. 13, 7314 (2022)]. Our In+/Yb+ optical clock has demonstrated operation with multiple clock ions and participated in local and international frequency comparisons with an evaluated systematic uncertainty in the low 10-18 range [publication in prep.].
By cooling crystals close to their motional ground state, time dilation uncertainties in ensembles of clock ions can be reduced to below 1 x 10-19. At this level of uncertainty, our system will be ideally suited to explore physics at the intersection of quantum mechanics and relativistic effects. In addition, we are investigating novel interrogation protocols for multi-ion spectroscopy.
Skills and Requirements
We are looking for an ambitious and highly motivated experimental researcher with good analytic thinking and experience in at least one of the following fields: spectroscopy of trapped ions or atoms, non-linear optics, lasers and laser stabilization, time & frequency metrology, opto-electronic controls and systems. We expect the applicant to be fluent in English and interested in leading a team of several PhD and Master students. The applicant should have completed a PhD in physics before starting the position.
The position is initially limited to two years, with a possibility for long-term options of up to six years. Starting date is as soon as possible. The salary will be paid in accordance with remuneration group 13 TVöD Bund. Applicants should send their CV, list of publications and references to Prof. Dr. Tanja Mehlstäubler (email@example.com).
Prof. Dr. Tanja E. Mehlstäubler
QUEST Institute at PTB
38116 Braunschweig, Germany
Tel.: +49 531 592-4710
Postdoctoral researcher in the field of quantum logic spectroscopy of highly charged ions (up to TVöD Bund E14)
Highly charged ions (HCIs) are ubiquitous in the observable universe and have many advantageous properties for fundamental physics tests and use as next-generation optical clocks. Building on our recent breakthrough in the clock-like laser spectroscopy of highly charged ions with a precision jump of nine orders of magnitude, the following tasks will be pursued:
- Participating in the ERC project titled ‘FunClocks’ and in other international cooperation projects
- Working with our team to install and characterize a new ion trap to improve the uncertainty of the system to less than 10‑18
- Developing quantum logic search techniques to enable the rapid localization and identification of narrow optical transitions in HCIs
- Performing optical frequency measurements at the technological limit and analyzing isotopic shift data with respect to the exclusion of 5th forces
- Developing optical clocks based on HCIs with an uncertainty of 10‑18
- Presenting the scientific results at international conferences
- You have successfully completed your university studies in physics (Master’s degree or German Diplom).
- You are interested in developing and performing high-precision experiments.
- You are highly committed and capable of working autonomously.
- You are a strong team player with excellent communication skills.
- You have a very good command of spoken and written English.
- A good knowledge of atomic physics, quantum optics, laser cooling, laser spectroscopy, or related fields would be an advantage.
- You must have the physical ability to work in a laboratory and perform experiments at external sites.
- A position at one of the world’s leading research institutions which has an excellent infrastructure
- Excellent national and international connections
- Hands-on training in modern experimental techniques in laser and quantum physics and active participation in the development of experiments at the forefront of quantum physics research
- Research leave abroad via our wide-ranging network
- Compatibility of work and family life (flexible working hours and part-time schemes)
- Remuneration in accordance with the collective bargaining agreement for the public service (Tarifvertrag öffentlicher Dienst Bund – TVöD for the federal level)
- In-house daycare center and canteen
- Various workplace health and wellness options
The post is initially limited to two years; an extension of the contract is possible. You will be employed at our Braunschweig site.
For more information, please contact Prof. Dr. Piet O. Schmidt
In the research group "Quantum Logic Spectroscopy" we deal with precision spectroscopy of trapped and laser-cooled atomic ions. Therefore, we develop quantum computer-inspired techniques for the coherent manipulation of ions and their spectroscopy for applications such as high-precision optical atomic clocks.
Development of compact optical setups with automated optimisation of operating parameters
Integration of the resulting hardware in a transportable Al+ quantum logic clock
Participation in the automation of the clock for continuous operation and characterisation of the clock
Participation in in-field measurement campaigns outside the laboratory environment for relativistic geodesy
The post is initially limited to three years; an extension of the contract is possible. You will be employed at our
Hannover site in the brand-new HITec lab building. The remuneration will be paid in accordance with up to remuneration group 14 TVöD Bund (100 %).
- An excellent research environment (DQ-mat CRC 1227, Excellence Cluster 2123) with access to PTB's unique infrastructure
- Practical training in modern experimental techniques in laser and quantum physics and active participation in the development of experiments at the forefront of quantum physics research.
- Possibility to present scientific results at international conferences
- We encourage research stays abroad with our international collaborators
- You have obtained an excellent university degree in physics
- You are interested in developing and realising precision experiments
- You are highly committed and capable of working both autonomously and together as part of a team, and you are willing to improve your skills
- You are a team player and have good communication skills
- Sound knowledge of atomic physics and experience in the field of quantum optics, laser cooling, laser
spectroscopy or related subjects is advantageous
- You have the physical ability to work in a laboratory and to perform experiments outside the institute
If you are interested, please contact Prof. Dr. Piet O. Schmidt