PhD scholarship in Nano-Photonic Circuits for Optical Communication DTU Electricity Denmark

PhD scholarship in Nano-Photonic Circuits for Optical Communication

DTU Electricity

Deadline 31 August 2017

You can apply for the job at DTU Elektro by completing the following application form.


Apply online


The Electromagnetic Systems (EMS) group at DTU Electrical Engineering invites applications for a 3-year PhD position that focuses on the development and synthesis of photonic circuits. The PhD will be a in close collaboration with the research centre NATEC (NAnophotonics for Terabit Communications) from DTU Fotonik.

Quantum Dots (QDs) are a special kind of single-photon sources and belong to the class of deterministic sources. Although the concept of a single photon was already proposed in 1900 by Planck, a true single-photon source was not created in isolation until 1974, and in 1977, evidence of single-photon emission from sodium atoms was observed for the first time.

Single-photon sources are indispensable for photonic quantum circuits and a major driver of the current research into single-photon sources and detectors is the explosive growth of the field of quantum-information science over the last few decades, especially quantum cryptography.

The field has reached a certain level of maturity. Today, it is possible to find nearly ideal devices when only one parameter is important, but performance of other parameters is often compromised. Specifically, for sources, while initial efforts were focused mostly on increasing brightness and generation efficiency, current improvement efforts are more driven by the requirements for particular applications and often deal directly with improving more than one characteristic simultaneously. These multi-parameter efforts include better single-photon state accuracy, and higher degrees of indistinguishability of single-photon output states, which is particularly important for many quantum-information applications.

When single-photon emission is desired, some external control is used to put the system into an excited state that will emit a single photon upon relaxation to some lower-energy state. While this is quite well mastered, the problem occurs in the collection and efficient light extraction, which poses a major challenge in the design of single-photon sources.  

This is the starting point for the proposed PhD thesis. It shall focus on the problem of collection efficiency and light extraction, but is not limited to it.   

Responsibilities and tasks 

The PhD comprises the following mains tasks: 

  • The efficient simulation of QDs, coupling structures and related photonic circuits The candidate shall setup a simulation model and investigate how to efficiently simulate the electrically large structures that often comprise several wavelengths.
  • Design and optimization of coupling structures to improve the collection efficiency and light extraction Taking as starting point typical concepts from microwave circuits and antennas, it shall be investigated if and how these approaches can be transferred to optical systems. Typical examples are lens, cavity-backed, or horn antennas but also other microwave matching circuits shall be considered.
  • Tuning elements The exact location of QDs when manufacturing a single-photon source is a serious problem. For example, in the case of micro-cavity pillars, the QD should be located in the centre of the cavity. However, this cannot be guaranteed, resulting in a lower efficiency and de-tuning of the source. Tuning elements are an essential element to account for manufacturing tolerances in the case of very narrow-band systems and for achieving optimal functioning of devices. The goal of this task is to study which possibilities exist and how to implement them for fine tuning the QD sources.



Candidates should hold a MSc in electrical engineering or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to the MSc in electrical engineering.

Additionally, the candidate must have knowledge of electromagnetics and circuit design and must have experience with the simulations tools HFSS and/or CST.

Experience in writing technical reports and scientific publications is an asset.

Approval and Enrolment

PhD scholarships are subject to academic approval, and the candidates will be enrolled in one of the general PhD programmes of DTU. For information about the general requirements for enrolment and the general planning of the scholarship studies, please see the DTU PhD Guide.  


The assessment of the applicants will be made by associate professors Samel Arslanagic, Niels Gregersen, and Michael Mattes. 

We offer

We offer an interesting and challenging job in an international environment focusing on education, research, scientific advice and innovation, which contribute to enhancing the economy and improving social welfare. We strive for academic excellence, collegial respect and freedom tempered by responsibility. The Technical University of Denmark (DTU) is a leading technical university in Northern Europe and benchmarks with the best universities in the world.    

Salary and appointment terms

The salary and appointment terms are consistent with the current rules for PhD students. The period of employment is 3 years.

Further information 

Further information may be obtained from Associate Professor Michael Mattes, Please note, applications sent by email will not be considered.

You can read more about DTU Elektro on and the Electromagnetic Systems group on 


Please submit your online application no later than 31 August 2017. Applications must be submitted as one pdf filecontaining all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online," fill in the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one pdf file. The file must include:

  • A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma
  • Excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and excel spreadsheet here)


Candidates may apply prior to obtaining their master's degree, but cannot begin before having received it. 

All qualified candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

The Department of Electrical Engineering is the central department at the Technical University of Denmark in electrical, biomedical engineering and acoustic technology. It is our goal to ensure an engineering training and research, which matches that of other leading universities around the world. The department is organized into sections each covering important areas of electrical, biomedical engineering and acoustic technologies. Including PhD students we have a total of 275 staff members. 

DTU is a technical university providing internationally leading research, education, innovation and scientific advice. Our staff of 5,800 advance science and technology to create innovative solutions that meet the demands of society; and our 10,600 students are being educated to address the technological challenges of the future. DTU is an independent academic university collaborating globally with business, industry, government, and public agencies.

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