Posted on 16/11/2011
Dr Nathan Langford carried out his doctoral studies in experimental and theoretical photonic quantum information with Prof. Andrew White at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. His work studied a broad range of different ways to encode, manipulate and measure quantum information in photonic systems, completing several first key experiments using polarisation, spatial and time-frequency photonic degrees of freedom, one of which was performed while on a research exchange in Prof. Paul Kwiat's group at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. During his PhD, he also carried out a number of theoretical projects, making key contributions to the areas of linear optics quantum gates, quantum state and process tomography and quantum process characterisation. In 2008, his thesis was selected as runner-up for the Australia-wide Bragg Gold Medal for Excellence in Physics from the Australian Institute of Physics and was also nominated for the AMO thesis prizes from both American and German Physical Societies.
After completing his PhD in 2007, Nathan obviously decided that he'd had enough of endless blue skies and sunshine and so he left the paradise of subtropical south-east Queensland and moved to Europe to pursue his research further. Initially taking up a postdoc position with Prof. Anton Zeilinger at the University of Vienna, he was involved with a range of projects, including fundamental tests of local realism and noncontextuality and studies of entanglement in coherent quantum processes. While in Vienna, he also lead a project developing a new nonlinear approach to photonic quantum computing, which has recently been published in Nature. In 2009, he then moved to Prof. Ian Walmsley's group at the University of Oxford, where he worked on experiments in quantum memories, integrated photonic quantum circuits and room-temperature solid-state entanglement.
In 2011, he won a Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowship to move into a new field and work as a postdoc with Dr Phil Meeson at the Royal Holloway Department of Physics. His new project, which started in August 2011, will build on his experience in nonlinear and quantum optics and photonic quantum information and apply these to the burgeoning area of superconducting microwave quantum circuits.