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Research Fellow in Quantum Technology for Fundamental Physics

University of Sussex - School of Mathematical Sciences/Dept of Physics and Astronomy

Location: Falmer
Salary: £34,304 to £40,927 per annum, pro rata if part time
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Placed On: 13th October 2021
Closes: 26th October 2021
Job Ref: 6949

Contract: fixed term for 2 years

We invite applications for a full-time postdoctoral position in Quantum Technology for Fundamental Physics within the ITCM Group at the University of Sussex, led by Prof Matthias Keller.

This position is funded by the UK ‘Network of clocks for measuring the stability of fundamental constants’ consortium (QSNET). The consortium aims to build a network of dissimilar clocks to search for spatio-temporal changes in fundamental constants.

Our partners in the network are the National Physical Laboratory, Imperial College London, and the University of Birmingham.

The goal of the project at Sussex is to measure the frequency of a vibrational transition in molecular nitrogen ions with unparalleled precision and compare it with an electronic transition in calcium ions.

The nitrogen ion's vibrational transition and the calcium ion's electronic transition exhibit different sensitivities to the proton-to-electron mass ratio, and therefore any relative changes in the frequencies of these transitions can be used to establish the degree to which the proton-to-electron mass ratio is constant.

In order to measure the vibrational frequency, a single nitrogen ion will be trapped alongside a single calcium ion. The calcium ion will serve as the read-out of the state of the molecule using a quantum logic spectroscopy scheme. A second ion trap system, which will hold a single calcium ion, will be used as a reference for the frequency comparison. 

The project will employ existing systems in the ITCM Group at Sussex and expand it in order to facilitate the frequency comparison. With the two ion traps and the molecular beam line in place, the focus of the project will be to expand the laser system for the vibrational frequency measurement, implement the quantum logic spectroscopy scheme and measure of the frequency ratio of the transitions within nitrogen and calcium.

The postholder will benefit from close interactions with the Sussex Theoretical Particle Physics (TPP)  and Mathematical Physics (MP) groups at the University of Sussex.  

Please contact Prof Matthias Keller for informal enquiries.

The University is committed to equality and valuing diversity, and applications are particularly welcomed from women and black and minority ethnic candidates, who are under-represented in academic posts in Science, Technology, Engineering, Medicine and Mathematics (STEMM) at Sussex.

Please note that this position may be subject to ATAS clearance if you require visa sponsorship.

For full details and how to apply see our vacancies page

The University of Sussex values the diversity of its staff and students and we welcome applicants from all backgrounds.

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