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Dodd-Walls Centre opportunities

PhD vacancies in Nanophotonics (University of Otago)

The Department of Physics at the University of Otago has vacancies for 2-3 PhD students in nanophotonics. The students will join in the Subwavelength Optics Group to work on one of the following research projects:

1. “Highly Efficient Nanophotonic Solar-Hydrogen Systems”, MBIE Smart Ideas funding, led by Prof. Richard Blaikie and Dr. Boyang Ding
2. “SPASER – Towards Practical Nanolaser Devices”, Marsden Fast-start project, supervised by Dr. Boyang Ding.

Application deadline: 31st December 2018.

PhD stipend: 25,000 NZ$ annual

Please consult Professor Richard Blaikie ( or Dr Boyang Ding ( for more information or send your CV together with a cover letter (1 page) to apply for the positions. Please also indicate which project you want to work on.

Job description
During the 3-year study, the PhD students will study the enhancement of light-matter interaction using nanophotonic resonators and develop relevant applications in photocatalysis (project 1) or lasing devices at the nanoscale (project 2). Specifically, they will:
1. Use numerical or analytical software, such as Comsol, Lumerical FDTD or Matlab, to design the nanophotonic structures integrated with semiconductors or rare-earth ions;
2. Utilize various nanofabrication techniques, including self-assembly, optical nanolithography, and electron beam lithography, to build these nano-optical devices;
3. Develop suitable methods to characterise the devices’ performance;
4. Understand the physical nature of the experiments and publish research outcomes on a regular basis in journals and at leading conferences

Key requirements:
1. Completion of a bachelor or master degree in one of the following disciplines: Physics, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Materials Science;
2. An outstanding research background in relevant areas preferably in nano-optics or nanofabrication;
3. Demonstrated strong organisational skills, experience in using initiative, working with minimal supervision and the ability to prioritise tasks to achieve project objectives within timelines;
4. Excellent interpersonal, and both written and verbal communication skills in English, demonstrated by presentation of research results at conferences, internal forums and through manuscript submissions;
5. Demonstrated ability to work in teams and to collaborate with others;
6. Other requirements subject to the University of Otago’s PhD admission standards, see .

1. A track record and demonstrated aptitude for quality research, as evidenced by research publications in leading journals and conferences commensurate with opportunity;
2. Experience in assisting with supervision of students undertaking undergraduate or higher degree research projects.

Optical Systems Engineer

Southern Photonics is a small Auckland based company which manufactures a range of optoelectronic systems, including photonics based test and measurement equipment, and fibre optic laser systems. The company is also involved in general consulting work in this area, and works with the University of Auckland as a subcontractor assisting in achieving contracted research milestones. Southern Photonics is also a partner with the Dodd Walls Centre for Photonic and Quantum Technologies, and is co-located with a prototype development laboratory for this Centre in Auckland. We are looking for a scientist or engineer with experience in photonics research, and in the development and manufacture of photonics based equipment.

We seek a dynamic individual who is prepared to get involved in all aspects of the company’s business. Our ideal candidate would have a PhD in laser system development, or in nonlinear fibre optics, with subsequent experience in industry. Other candidates will be considered however, taking into account their experience and qualifications. The appointee will have the opportunity to contribute to the growth of the company, and indeed would be able to help shape its growth.

Southern Photonics regularly exhibits its equipment at international trade shows, and assists in the production of research papers for associated academic conferences. The appointee will have the opportunity to travel to such conferences and trade shows, if they are involved
in the research work or in the marketing area of the business.

For further details please contact John Harvey ( Applicants should submit a cover letter that addresses key criteria in the job description along with a CV before November 26th, 2018.
Interviews in person or by Zoom will be organised in the first week of December.

PhD POSITION - 18TH OCTOBER 2018 (00000003)

Masters Project (experimental) Available

The Light and Matter Group at Otago Physics is looking for a motivated masters level student to work in our Marsden-funded Rydberg Quantum Optics project, where the aim is to store single photons in distant ensembles of ultracold atoms.  Photons do not normally interact with each other.  Our photons - stored as Rydberg excitations of the atoms - interact with each other extremely strongly (see graphic in document below).  This provides an exciting platform for photonic quantum manipulation and nonlinear optics at the single photon level.

Kjaergaard Masters_project (1.03MB)

The proposed masters project will involve building up a laser system to address the Rydberg states of fermionic 40K and perform spectroscopy of its Rydberg states. This will be followed by demonstrations of storage of photons in ultracold fermionic ensembles and their efficient retrieval. An ultracold atom machine producing degenerate fermionic samples of 40K and con gurable arrays of ultracold atoms trapped using optical tweezers already exist in our lab (see figure), and so does the building blocks of the relevant laser system. 

If you are enthusiastic student who loves photons, atoms, lasers and cool gadgets, this can be an ideal project for you. Please contact or if interested to get a lab tour.  Honours and PhD projects also available.

Postdoctoral Fellowships available for 2018

The Dodd-Walls Centre is appointing postdoctoral researchers to begin in 2018-19, and we welcome applications from researchers and students nearing completion of their PhD.

Postdoctoral candidates should have experience of working in photonics, quantum physics, or a related discipline, and a strong track record of publications. We will post information here as postdoctoral fellowships become available.

All positions are offered through our partner universities and applications are processed through the universities. Full application instructions can be found with each position.

Read the current list of DWC Postdoctoral Fellowships here