PhD Studentships in Single Microwave Photon detector with trapped electrons (2017)

We are pleased to offer these fully-funded PhD studentships, available in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Sussex.

The Sussex Centre for Quantum Technologies is committed to the development of novel practical quantum technologies as well as to fundamental quantum physics research. Experimental activity includes architectures for quantum information processing with ions (QIP technology), interfaces for atomic ions with optical fibers (quantum communications technology), quantum simulators, and the development of quantum microwave circuits with trapped electrons (quantum metrology). The centre has also a strong theory activity on these and other research areas.

We are recruiting highly motivated candidates with strong interest in experimental work. The goal is the development of a Single Microwave photon detector with trapped electrons. An efficient detector of single microwave (MW) photons is a fundamental tool still missing in quantum technology. Such detectors are essential for determining the quantum state of GHz radiation fields and thus vital for quantum communication/information applications with microwaves. At Sussex we have developed a pioneering ion (Penning) trap technology on a superconducting chip that will enable trapped electrons as ultra-sensitive microwave sensors. These will offer unique capabilities for the observation and coherent manipulation of quantum MW fields.

The project is part of the recently awarded “Quantum Microwave Sensor” EPSRC Quantum Technology fellowship, leaded by Dr Jose Verdu. It includes a close collaboration with the Mullard Space Science Laboratory (University College London) as well as other world-leading industrial partners.

Award amount

£14057 per annum tax-free bursary and waiver of UK/EU fees each year for 3.5 years. Full-time study.


Applicants should preferably have a degree in Physics or a related subject. Experience in Penning traps, microwave engineering, RF-electronics, superconductors or related experimental skills is advantageous, but not mandatory. The position is for 3.5 years, fully funded (fees and stipend) for UK/EU students. 

Application procedure

Apply through the Sussex on-line system State in the Funding section of the application form that you are applying for the “Single Microwave Photon detector with trapped electrons supervided by Dr Jose Verdu”. Applications should include a CV, as well as transcripts of marks obtained on your degree(s). 


Candidates are encouraged to apply, or at least make an expression of interest, as early as possible. The award will be filled as soon as a suitable candidate can be found.

Further information

This is a full-time studentships and the successful candidate will be able to devote their whole time to research. With agreement of the supervisor the student may take on a limited amount of teaching, for which additional payment will be made.The Sussex Centre for Quantum Technologies Research Group’s webpages can be found here:

Contact details

Contact Dr Jose Verdu: