PhD scholarship in Quantum Thermodynamics and Sensing

DTU Fysik
mandag 05 mar 18

Send ansøgning

Frist 1. maj 2018
Du kan søge om jobbet ved DTU Fysik ved at udfylde den efterfølgende ansøgningsformular.

Ansøg online

A 3-year Ph.D. scholarship in quantum thermodynamics and sensing is available at the Department of Physics.

The successful candidate will take part in establishing a new, young research team lead by Dr. Jonatan Bohr Brask. The work will be of a theoretical nature, but close and fruitful collaboration is envisaged with the experimental groups at the Section for Quantum Physics and Information Technology (QPIT) and the Center for Macroscopic Quantum States (bigQ). QPIT and bigQ provide a stimulating, international environment, with research focusing on quantum information technology and precision sensing using quantum optics, opto-mechanical, and solid-state systems.

Quantum information science (QIS) is based on the realisation that quantum effects enable improvements over classical methods in tasks ranging from secure communication to precision measurements. Thermodynamics is strongly related to information theory, and new tools and concepts from quantum information are currently revolutionising quantum thermodynamics. However, despite tremendous progress, it is fair to say that we still lack a fundamental understanding of the basic question: what is the role of quantum effects in thermodynamics?

At the same time our ability to manipulate small systems has vastly improved. This means we can now study thermal processes at the quantum level in the lab. In particular, it is viable to build microscopic versions of heat engines and refrigerators.

In this project, we aim to harness thermal processes for QIS and sensing by developing new quantum thermal machines, and to gain a deeper understanding of quantum thermodynamics by studying the fundamental performance limits on such machines.

Responsibilities and tasks
We are looking for a highly motivated student who will be exploring the interface between quantum information science, thermodynamics, and quantum-enhanced sensing.

You will be using tools and techniques from quantum information theory and theoretical quantum optics to: 

  • Develop new quantum thermal machines which generate resources for QIS, in particular entanglement.
  • Establish fundamental performance limits of quantum thermal machines to gain a deeper understanding of the connections between quantum physics and thermodynamics.
  • Explore potential implementations of quantum thermal machines on different physical platforms, such as Nitrogen-Vacancy centers in diamond, opto-mechanical systems, or superconducting systems.
In addition, you will need good communication and inter-personal skills to:
  • Collaborate with fellow researchers both locally at QPIT and internationally.
  • Present our results at international conferences.
  • Participate in teaching, and in the dissemination of science and research to the general public.
  • Contribute to a dynamic, pleasant, open, and inclusive environment in the research group.
We seek academically excellent students with a background in physics or related fields. Prior experience with quantum information science is an advantage.

We expect that you: 
  • Are excited about big scientific challenges.
  • Love to discuss physics and enjoy working in a team.
  • Are independent and have a good ability to develop new ideas.
  • Have an excellent level of written and spoken English.

Candidates should have a master's degree in engineering or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to the master's degree in engineering.

Approval and Enrolment
The scholarship for the PhD degree are subject to academic approval, and the candidates will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes of DTU. For information about the general requirements for enrolment and the general planning of the scholarship studies, please see the DTU PhD Guide.

We offer
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and an academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and appointment terms
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed with the relevant union. The period of employment is 3 years.

The starting date for the scholarship is expected to be in the autumn of 2018, preferably towards the beginning of the autumn semester.

You can read more about career paths at DTU here.   

Further information
Popular summaries of previous research can be found at, and further information may be obtained from Dr. Jonatan Bohr Brask,  

See also additional information on the research topic and Dr. Jonatan Bohr Brask from the Independent Research Fund Denmark (in Danish).

You can read more about the Section for Quantum Physics and Information Technology at 

Please submit your online application no later than 1 May 2018 (local time). Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online", fill in the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include: 

  • A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma
  • Excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and excel spreadsheet here)

Candidates may apply prior to ob­tai­ning their master's degree, but cannot begin before having received it.

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

DTU is a technical university providing internationally leading research, education, innovation and scientific advice. Our staff of 5,800 advance science and technology to create innovative solutions that meet the demands of society; and our 11,000 students are being educated to address the technological challenges of the future. DTU is an independent academic university collaborating globally with business, industry, government, and public agencies.