72566 - Introduction to Quantum Optics

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2018/2019

Learning outcomes

The student will learn elementary quantum optics and matter-wave interaction theory in order to understand the recent experimental advances in the field of laser-assisted manipulation of atoms, specifically laser cooling and trapping for both fundamental and applied physics.

Course contents

Matter-wave interaction: A e B di Einstein's A and B.

Two levels atom in a classical field: optical Bloch equations, Bloch's vector, rotating wave approximation, Rabi's oscillations, Ramsey's method.

Two levels atom in a quantized field (Jaynes-Cummings' model): Fock's states and coherent states, spontaneous decay, micromaser.

dressed atom: energy levels, fluorescence spectrum.

Laser cooling: Doppler cooling, Doppler limit, elements of sub-Doppler cooling.

Ion traps: RF traps (Paul), static traps (Penning).

Atom traps: magneto-optical traps, magnetic traps (Quadrupole,Joffe,Time Orbiting Potential), optical traps, optical lattices.

Some special lasers: ultrastable CW lasers, optical combs, measurement of optical frequencies.

Some notions on: evaporative cooling, reaching quantum degeneracy, optical clocks, atom interferometry.


- Notes and slides from the teacher. Check on iol.
- Notes by D. A. Steck, available here.

Teaching methods

Lectures and assigned readings and discussion of scientific papers.

Assessment methods

The knowledge of the basic facts of atoms-radiation interaction will be verified with oral questions and/or with the request to the student to prepare a short seminar on arguments treated in the course.

Teaching tools

Blackboard and, occasionally,  slides

Office hours

See the website of Marco Prevedelli