année académique

Titulaire(s) du cours

Stéphane CLEMMEN (Coordonnateur) et Serge MASSAR

Crédits ECTS


Langue(s) d'enseignement


Contenu du cours

Quantum optics is the study of light and its interaction with matter at the level of single photons and single atoms. Applications of quantum optics include the theory of lasers, the manipulation of single atoms (for quantum clocks, for creating ultra-cold atoms), quantum communication (quantum key distribution), quantum computing (quantum logic gates), and fundamental topics such as entanglement. Progress in quantum optics continues to be fast and exciting.

The aim of the course is to provide an overview of the theory of quantum optics, and its uses both for fundamental physics experiments and applications.

In the first part of the course we will study the different states of light: thermal states, coherent states emitted by lasers, squeezed states, single photon states, entangled states. We will study the associated notions of coherence, the corresponding statistical distributions, and how they can be measured.

The second part of the course is devoted to light-matter interaction at the quantum level. Applications include: optical forces, optical cooling, quantum computing with ions.

The third part of the course will be devoted to sources of single photons and of photon pairs, and their applications.

The fourth part of the course will be devoted to contemporary topics in quantum optics, including quantum computing, teleportation, quantum key distribution, quantum memories for light, super resolution.

Objectifs (et/ou acquis d'apprentissages spécifiques)

Introduce quantum optics, from fundamentals to applications.

Introduce contemporary topics in quantum optics.


Connaissances et compétences pré-requises

A strong background in quantum mechanics (e.g. PHYS-F-302 - Quantum Mechanics 2) is necessary.
A basic introduction to field theory, and to atomic physics are useful but not necessary.

Méthodes d'enseignement et activités d'apprentissages

Ex-cathedra course; commented slides (podcast); exercise sessions.

Références, bibliographie et lectures recommandées

Quantum Optics: An Introduction by Mark Fox
The Quantum Theory of Light by Rodney Loudon
Introductory Quantum Optics by C. Gerry and P. Knight

Support(s) de cours

  • Podcast
  • Université virtuelle

Autres renseignements


Stéphane Clemmen ( and Serge Massar (




Méthode(s) d'évaluation

  • Examen oral

Oral Exam.

Langue(s) d'évaluation

  • anglais
  • (éventuellement français )