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Experimental Techniques in Quantum Optics

Module PH7017

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

PH7017 is a semester module in English language at which is offered in summer 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)
180 h 60 h 6 CP

Responsible coordinator of the module PH7017 is Monika Aidelsburger.

Content, Learning Outcome and Preconditions


Ever improving measurements and control in the field of quantum optics have enabled today’s most precise measurements of time as well as atomic gases at the coldest temperatures ever recorded. This module introduces key experimental techniques used in such experiments, focusing on practical applications in the laboratory. Subjects will include random processes and noise, control theory and feedback loops, electronics, photon detection, and optical elements. We will also touch on several practical applications of the techniques and methods introduced in the lecture, focusing on the stabilization of laser light

Learning Outcome

After successful completion of the module the students are able to:

  1. Describe how random processes give rise to noise and its spectral features
  2. Explain open-loop and closed-loop response in frequency space
  3. Understand stability and instability in feedback loops
  4. Design simple proportional, integral, and derivative (PID) feedback loops to suppress noise
  5. Design simple electronic circuits for the amplified detection of light
  6. Design simple optical setups to control the spatial profile, intensity, phase, and polarization of laser light
  7. Understand various aspects of stabilization techniques for laser phase and intensity


No preconditions in addition to 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 lectures (2 SWS) and tutorial classes (2 SWS). The main teaching material will typically be presented on the blackboard, or a tablet computer and projector, supplemented by computer presentation slides to show important research results. Where applicable, devices from the laboratory will be physically shown. Weekly problem sets are offered to comprehend the lecture content better and improve their familiarity with them. The solutions to the problem sets are discussed in the weekly exercise classes.


Blackboard / tablet computer, computer presentation slides


  • P. C. D. Hobbs, Building Electro-Optical Systems: Making it all Work (Wiley)
  • P. Horowitz and W. Hill, The Art of Electronics (Cambridge University Press)
  • B. E. A. Saleh and M. C. Teich, Fundamentals of Photonics (Wiley)

Module Exam

Description of exams and course work

There will be an oral exam of 25 minutes duration. Therein the achievement of the competencies given in section learning outcome is tested exemplarily at least to the given cognition level using comprehension questions and sample calculations.

For example an assignment in the exam might be:

  • Derivation of simple relationships relevant for key concepts in the lecture such as the transfer function of a closed loop linear-response system
  • Calculation of important quantities from simple expressions such as the poles of a transfer function
  • Explanation of the working principle and features of devices introduced in the lecture such as the response of semiconductor photo detectors
  • Show how techniques such as laser intensity stabilization can be applied in the laboratory

Exam Repetition

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

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