PhD position: Hybrid nanophotonics - AMOLF, Netherlands

The Resonant Nanophotonics group at AMOLF focuses on the use of plasmonics and metamaterials to control the emission, propagation and absorption of light on the nanoscale, at the level of single photons interacting with single emitters. The group has state of the art experimental facilities to probe scattering of nanoscale optical antennas, photophysics of single molecules, quantum dots and other emitters, as well as for measuring on integrated optics devices. Nanofabrication of samples is performed in the state of the art clean room at AMOLF. Alongside the strong experimental profile, the group also provides a strong theoretical background, in form of both fullwave frequency domain and time domain simulation tools, semianalytical dyadic Green function techniques and grating codes. Our complete publication list can be found on and

The research will be performed in close collaboration with a team of two other PhD students, in framework of a Vici grant. Alongside this effort, the group has PhD students working on metasurfaces, nanoscale lasers and lighting applications.

The PhD students will receive their training in the collaborative ‘Center for Nanophotonics’, also comprising groups working in fields as diverse as near-field optics, cavity optomechanics, optical signal transport, nanophotovoltaics, solid-state lighting and nanoscale sources, sensors and detectors for ultimately low power photonic integrated circuitry. Both fundamental science and an eye to applications are a main strength of AMOLF.

Job description

The group Resonant Nanophotonics at AMOLF is looking for a PhD student to work on ‘Hybrid nanophotonics for ultrafast quantum optics’.

A pinnacle of physics is our control over how a photon and a single atom, molecule, or quantum dot interact, giving rise to fluorescence, absorption, and coherent quantum coupling as required for quantum information science. This understanding, known as ‘cavity QED’, however, requires ideal emitters and optical resonators that isolate photons for millions of roundtrips (Q=106).

This research programme tackles the following experimental and fundamental challenge: is it physically possible to realize very strong light-matter interaction at any practical Q and if so, how can we harness it. Practically, we will reach this by a combination or ‘hybrid’ of on one and ‘plasmonics’ and on the other hand, dielectric microresonators. Noble metal structures can store photons in (lambda/100) volumes at Qs of just 5 to 10 through ‘plasmons’. By literally placing plasmon antennas inside microcavities we aim at quantum strong coupling at any practical Q.

The challenges we face are (1) design of hybrid plasmonic modes, (2) nanofabrication in AMOLFs state-of-the-art cleanroom ( , (3) optical interrogation by scattering, spectroscopy and near-field probing and (4) integration with single emitters to measure quantum optical signatures (Purcell factors, Rabi splitting) with single-molecule microscopy techniques. While the successful candidate will form part of a team working on these challenges, the particular focus of the candidate will be challenge (4), for which the candidate will set up low temperature single molecule microscopy and spectroscopy.


FOM Institute AMOLF performs leading fundamental research on physics of Biomolecular Systems and Nanophotonics; two areas with key potential for technological innovations. The Institute contributes to knowledge transfer to industry and society and trains talented young researchers. AMOLF is located at Science Park Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and engages approximately 140 scientists and 70 support staff. See also


You will need to meet the requirements for an MSc degree. Suitable MSc degrees could be in Physics, Optics and Photonics or Electrical Engineering. While the project involves theory and experiment, the main thrust will be in demanding optical experiments. Hence proven skill with optical experimentation is a distinct advantage.

Conditions of employment

When fulfilling a PhD position at the FOM Foundation, you will get the status of junior scientist.
You will have an employee status and can participate in all the employee benefits FOM offers. You will get a contract for four years. Your salary will be up to a maximum of 2,718 euro gross per month.The salary is supplemented with a holiday allowance of 8 percent and an end-of-year bonus of 8.33 percent.
You are supposed to have a thesis finished at the end of your four year term with FOM.
A training programme is part of the agreement. You and your supervisor will make up a plan for the additional education and supervising that you specifically need. This plan also defines which teaching activities you will be responsible (up to a maximum of ten percent of your time). The conditions of employment of the FOM Foundation are laid down in the Collective Labour Agreement for Research Centres (Cao-Onderzoekinstellingen), more exclusive information is available at this website under Personeelsinformatie (in Dutch) or under Personnel (in English).
General information about working at FOM can be found in the English part of this website under Personnel. The ‘FOM job interview code’ applies to this position.


Prof.dr. A.F. Koenderink, group leader Resonant Nanophotonics, +31 20 754 71 00.



You can respond to this vacancy online via the button below. Please quote vacancy # 1504-47

Please send your:
– resume;
– motivation on why you want to join the group (maximum 1 page).
Applications without this motivation will not be taken into account. However, with this motivation your application will receive our full attention.

Online screening may be part of the selection.
Commercial response to this ad is not appreciated.

Please use the online form for applications.

Apply here

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