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Vacant Positions

Postdoc Positions at University of Strathclyde

Applications are invited to fill up to two postdoc positions to work with the Quantum Optics and Quantum Many-body Systems team at the University of Strathclyde, to work on two related PASQuanS tasks:

1) Benchmarking, certification, and applications of analogue quantum simulators, associated with the EU Flagship project on Programmable Large-Scale Atomic Quantum Simulators (

2) Software development for applications of quantum simulators, especially considering the mapping of solutions of partial differential equations onto quantum dynamics.

We are seeking highly motivated theoretical researchers who will be responsible for research on each of these projects, developing novel insight into many-body physics, new techniques to benchmark and verify quantum simulators, and applications relevant to other academic disciplines and industry. The successful applicants will be based in the Department of Physics under the supervision of Prof. Andrew Daley. Technical knowledge of computational methods, especially tensor network techniques for many-body dynamics, would be an advantage.

The applications are available online at (vacancy reference 244690). For any more information, please contact Prof. Andrew Daley (

Professor Andrew Daley
Department of Physics
University of Strathclyde
John Anderson Building
107 Rottenrow East
Glasgow G4 0NG, UK

Master 2 thesis & PhD proposal at Institut d´Optique

Dissipative quantum simulation with sub-wavelength atom arrays

Quantum Optics – Atoms group (
Laboratoire Charles Fabry, Institut d’Optique, Palaiseau, France

Proposal for a Master 2 thesis to be followed by a PhD (starting date: spring 2020).
Supervisors: Antoine Browaeys:
Igor Ferrier-Barbut:
Internship allowance: Yes

The goal of this thesis project is to develop a quantum simulator for dissipative quantum-many problems, to emulate many-body ensembles with intrinsic collective dissipation and with external driving by a classical or quantum field. The platform we will develop during this internship, to be followed by a PhD, will be based on structured ensembles of atoms held in microscopic optical traps (tweezers), and interacting with near-resonant laser light. The light induced dipoles interact via the resonant dipole-dipole interaction mediated by the vacuum field.

The structuring of atomic arrays in optical tweezers creating a configurable quantum simulator has been invented by our group [1,2]. The collective effects will be here induced by the resonant dipole interactions between the atoms, which exhibits both a real and imaginary part, which signs a collective spontaneous emission.
The exchange of excitation that results from the interaction naturally implements an interacting spin system where the two atomic states are mapped onto the two states of a spin 1⁄2 (see figure). This system is thus a quantum simulator for dissipative spin systems. To reach strong interactions, the interparticle distance must be shorter than the wavelength of the transition between the two levels, here around l = 780nm for Rb atoms.

The project will take place on an existing cold rubidium setup, with
high-numerical-aperture lenses in vacuum. We will first explore situations where atoms are ordered in a chain and will target an interparticle distance smaller than l/2. In this situation long lived sub-radiant states should exist that we will seek to observe [3]. We will then generate an optical tweezer array with light close to a blue transition of Rb at 420nm in order to reduce the diffraction limit. Using a spatial light modulator (SLM) we will generate a configurable array with interparticle distance of a few hundred nm, thus shorter than the wavelength of the transition at 780nm. Such arrays have been predicted to exhibits perfect reflectivity [4,5]. During the PhD that will follow we will put the optical tweezer array in place on the experiment and implement the experimental protocol to deterministically fill it with single atoms. We will then perform the first experiments in the strongly interacting regime.

[1] D. Barredo et al., Science 354, 1021 (2016).
[2] D. Barredo et al., Nature 561, 79 (2018).
[3] R. Bettles et al., PRA 94, 043844 (2016).
[4] R. Bettles et al., PRL 116 103602 (2016).
[5] E. Shahmoon et al., PRL 116 103602 (2016).

PhD in Physics at University of Padova

The call for the 2020 selection is now open. Deadline: June 16th

Our PhD-program in Physics aims to train you in applying the scientific approach wherever you are, the problem to face, from the smallest to the largest scale in the Universe. It goes far beyond to become expert in a scientific discipline.


The University of Padova (UniPD) offers 39 PhD Courses amongst which the Physics course is managed by the Department of Physics and Astronomy “Galileo Galilei” (DFA). Organized by DFA faculty members and their national and international collaborators, it offers the students a world-class academic training in several fields of experimental and theoretical Physics by exploiting the opportunities emerging from interdisciplinary approaches. Our PhD school trains new researchers who can either pursue an academic career in top level international institutions or join private companies and contribute significantly to their growth.

The DPhil in Physics is a research-based course of three years in duration: PhD students are supervised throughout the entire duration of the course and join the supervisor’s research group.

The research activity is complemented by academic training activities including the attendance to internal courses as well as national and international schools to increase your basic and specialist physics knowledge.

At the end of the course, PhD students are expected to submit a written thesis that will be reviewed by two experts and defend it in an interview with a Panel of other specialists, either from the host and other (inter)national institutions.

The research program

Each PhD student may choose a research topic among the very wide set of fields of competences of the DFA members:

Applied Physics, Astrophysics, Biophysics, Cosmology,  Gravitational Waves Physics,  Multimessenger Astroparticle, Neutrino Physics , Nuclear Physics, Physics at  Colliders, Physics of Data and of Complex Systems, Physics of Matter, Quantum Technologies, Theoretical Physics.

The PhD candidate will be assigned a supervisor according to the research topic who will supervise her/his research and training activities. PhD-students join research groups and will work in teams including undergraduate students, post-docs, researchers and faculty members. The team-work experience is in fact an important opportunity for the PhD candidate to be involved and committed in international collaborations.

As part of the research activity, candidates are suggested to spend a research period abroad (up to 18 months) also taking advantage of dedicated funds. The final destination can be chosen by the PhD student upon agreement with the supervisor. Periods of permanence abroad will be funded by the PhD-school and/or by the research group. Although not formally required,PhD students are encouraged to publish the results of their research in at least one publication on peer-reviewed journals before the end of the PhD program.

Academic training

The Academic Year starts on October the 1st. The school provides a wide academic educational offer in all the disciplines related to the research fields listed above. Students have to select four or more lectures each completed with a dedicated exam. It is compulsory to pass at least four exams during the first two years (three of which during the first year). The educational program is complemented by a compulsory soft-skill training; it is organized in two three-credits courses (24 hours front lectures each), meant to introduce students to the preparation of research proposals and to teaching techniques.

In case of not compliance, the PhD student will be excluded from the PhD-school. Derogations can be considered only in case of submitted evidences of the force majore that has prevented her/his compliance. In any case it is upon the PhD school management to accept or reject the derogation’s request.

All lectures are held in English: here you can find the complete list of the courses offered in AA 2019/2020.

Upon agreement with the supervisor, and approval of the PhD-school panel, PhD students may propose to substitute one of the offered courses with a course chosen among the programs of other doctoral-schools, either within the wider UniPd academic program, or at international institutions, as well as at topical international training events dedicated to PhD scholars.

Participation to national or international schools focused on the student’s research program is encouraged and supported by the PhD-school or the research group budget.

All candidates of the PhD school at DFA are eligible for the additional mention of Doctor Europaeus: this title is subject to special requirements to be observed during the three-year research and at the final stage of thesis evaluation. More details can be found here (see the section Doctor Europaeus for guidelines)

Admission to the School


Applicants need to hold or to expect to hold by Oct 1^st 2020 the equivalent of the following Italian qualifications: second-class undergraduate degree (laurea magistrale or laurea magistrale a ciclo unico).  Bachelor’s degrees with a minimum four years‘ standard duration may satisfy the entry requirements, the equivalence will be assessed case by case using the ECTS tables.

·         Application

Students may send their application in Spring (actual dates vary year by year but are announced with due advance). The application package usually includes: Curriculum Vitae and Studiorum, academic records, master thesis, recommendation letters, and other documents/material, according to the rules indicated in the call. 

      You can find here the technical guidelines for the submission of the application form for the PhD Course in PhysicsAn overview of all the calls from all the schools in Padova can be found at this other URL.

·         Selection . Admission is subject to a two-steps selection procedure :

o    Step 1: a Selection Committee formed by experts chosen among the faculty and staff members of the DFA as well as of other Italian or International Institution evaluates the application material, and selects a short list to be the interviewed. The number of interviews depends on the available number PhD-scholarships.

o    Step 2: Interviews aimed to overview the application material and the candidate’s scientific competences. They can be held by using remote connections tools provided that they guarantee video recognition. At the end of the interview process, the Selection Committee publishes a list where the interviewed candidates are ranked, according to the obtained total score.
The selection procedure usually ends before the end of July, and afterwards, the top ranked candidates are offered a position. The others are automatically included a waiting list, and might be later offered a position, according to the withdrawal of the candidates appearing at earlier positions.

Important dates for 2020 call :

o    Call opening /closing : May7th – June 16th

o    First step completion and publication of the interview list : July 7th

o    Start of interviews : July 14th, 2 pm. This might take up to three days.

o    The final list of those candidates who are be admitted to the PhD-school is expected to be completed by the end of September. The PhD program begins in October.

·         PhD-scholarships
The actual number of PhD-scholarships may vary on a year-base. For 2020 call (36th cycle) there are:

o    Thirteen open topic scholarships (“tema libero”) granted by the DFA and partner institutions as National Institute of Nuclear Physics (INFN) and CARIPARO. Open topic scholarship refers to the position in which the PhD student can choose the topic of his research among those offered.

o    Ten additional positions financially supported by partner institutions or private companies/funds: in this case the PhD grant is linked to the execution of a specific research topic. Such positions are called constrained-topic (“tema vincolato”)scholarships and are usually offered according to special funding schemes and special research frameworks which are active within a dedicated period of time. Please note that applications to the constrained-topic are independent of those provided in the open-topic framework. Therefore applicants are strongly encouraged to follow the details provided in the corresponding calls.

o    Two additional positions are reserved to students who did not earn their degree in Italy. Students fulfilling this requirement are encouraged to apply to this call and to the open topic scolarships as well.

PhD-scholars are provided with a three-year grant. European citizens are granted by the Social medical insurance by way of the TEAM Systems. Otherwise, specific rules hold and are country dependent and must be verified accordingly.

o    Two un-granted positions are offered as well. Candidates must specify if they want to apply for both granted and un-granted positions or to just one of the two.

Additional funds are foreseen for scientific missions and in case of long permanence abroad both for granted and un-granted positions.
Details about UniPD PhD Courses and admission rules are given at


Each PhD student has right to an equipped desk in the PhD-students room. A desk, PC and/or a Laptop may also be provided by the research groups. Access to DFA and INFN computing resources are granted upon request. Students involved in experimental activities have access to the DFA laboratories, and/or to the facilities of many national (LNL, LNGS) and international labs (CERN, GANIL, KEK, etc.) collaborating with our research groups. A list of UniPd and DFA Facilities can be found here.


In case of questions or doubts, please do not hesitate contact the PhD-school secretary at:
Cristina.Mazzucco [at]


Regardless of these vacant positions, unsolicited applications are also welcome. Please send them to the respective partner.