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Quantum Optics 1

Module PH7001

This module is offered by Ludwig-Maximilians University Munich (LMU). It is available for TUM students only within a joint degree program (e. g. M. Sc. Quantum Science & Technology).

This module handbook serves to describe contents, learning outcome, methods and examination type as well as linking to current dates for courses and module examination in the respective sections.

Basic Information

PH7001 is a semester module in English language at Master’s level which is offered in winter semester.

This Module is included in the following catalogues within the study programs in physics.

  • Focus Area Experimental Quantum Science & Technology in M.Sc. Quantum Science & Technology

If not stated otherwise for export to a non-physics program the student workload is given in the following table.

Total workloadContact hoursCredits (ECTS)
270 h 90 h 9 CP

Responsible coordinator of the module PH7001 is Immanuel Bloch.

Content, Learning Outcome and Preconditions


This module gives an introduction to the wide field of quantum optics. Subjects will include: from ray to wave optics, Gaussian beams, field quantization, Fock states, coherent states, squeezed states, thermal states, two level systems, Jaynes-Cummings and dressed atoms as well as measurable consequences of the electromagnetic vacuum. If time permits I will touch some aspects of correlations and photon statistics as well as topics on quantum information such as teleportation and quantum cryptography.

Learning Outcome

After completing the Module the student is able to:

  1. Explain and calculate the properties of field states.

  2. Discuss various phenomena related to quantized light-atom interaction in two-level systems based on the Jaynes-Cummings-Model.

  3. Explain various experimental settings that can be used to study important quantum phenomena, such as vacuum Rabi oscillations or non-destructive measurements of photons.

  4. Understand various aspects of the quantum vacuum such as spontaneous emission, Purcell effect, Casimir force and the Lamb shift.

  5. Understand coherence phenomena and correlation functions. 

  6. Understand the role of entanglement and the generation of entangled photon pairs.


No prerequisites beyond the requirements for the Master’s program in Quantum Science and Technology.

Courses, Learning and Teaching Methods and Literature

Courses and Schedule

Learning and Teaching Methods

The module consists of a lecture series (4 SWS) and exercise classes (2 SWS). 

During lecture the teaching material will be presented on the blackboard. Problem sets are offered to obtain a better comprehension of the lecture content and to improve the familiarity with them. The solutions to these problem sets are discussed in exercise sessions.

Participation in the exercise classes is strongly recommended, since the exercises are aids for acquiring a deeper understanding of the core concepts of the course and for practicing to solve typical exam problems.




Standard textbooks of quantum optics, for example:

  • Quantum Optics, Mark Fox, Oxford University Press: Elementary introduction to quantum optics

  • The Quantum Theory of Light, Rodney Loudon, Oxford University Press: Classic quantum optics textbook, which provides a very good introduction (no discussion of modern experiments)

  • Quantum Optics, Marlan O. Scully, and M. Suhail Zubairy, Cambridge University Press: Advanced textbook on quantum optics (modern notation)

  • Quantum Electronics, A.Yariv, Wiley & Sons 1988

  • Fundamentals of Photoncs, B.E.A.Saleh & M.C.Teich, Wiley & Sons 1991

  • Quantum Optics, D.F. Walls & G.J. Milburn, Springer 2006

Module Exam

Description of exams and course work

There will be a written exam of 120 minutes duration. Therein the achievement of the competencies given in section learning outcome is tested exemplarily at least to the given cognition level using conceptual questions and computational tasks.

For example an assignment in the exam might be:

  • Discuss the light-atom interaction for a two-level atom interacting with a classical single-frequency light field – describe the evolution of the Bloch vector for resonant/off-resonant illumination, and the effect of spontaneous emission on this evolution.
  • Calculate various properties of field states, for example Fock states and Coherent states.
  • Derivation and discussion of the Jaynes-Cummings model.
  • Computation of correlation functions and discussion of coherence in beam-splitter/interferometer-type setups for classical / non-classical light sources.
  • Discuss beam-splitter/interferometer-type settings.

Exam Repetition

The exam may be repeated at the end of the semester.

Current exam dates

Currently TUMonline lists the following exam dates. In addition to the general information above please refer to the current information given during the course.

Exam to Quantum Optics 1
Fri, 2024-02-16, 9:00 till 11:00 Exam takes place at LMU, Theresienstr. 39 - Arnold Sommerfeld (B 052) till 2024-01-15 (cancelation of registration till 2024-02-09)
Mon, 2024-03-25 till 23:59 Dummy-Termin. Wenden Sie sich zur individuellen Terminvereinbarung an die/den Prüfer(in). Anmeldung für Prüfungstermin zwischen 25.03.2024 und 20.04.2024. // Dummy date. Contact examiner for individual appointment. Registration for exam date between 2024-Mar-25 and 2024-Apr-20. till 2024-03-24
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