Summer studentships available

There are a number of summer studentships available, in and around the quantum optics group, for more information please contact Jevon in room 315.

1) Build a fiber based fluorescent probe

Collaborators in the medical school are wanting to measure the fluorescence from green fluorescent protein in mouse brains. To do this they want a fiber based probe that excites the tissue with blue light and detects the green fluorescence.

2) Build an atomic clock

The simplest atomic time/frequency standards are based on the laser spectroscopy of alkali metals (in particular cesium and rubidium) in vapour cells. This project is funded by a NZ company that uses such atomic clocks extensively in their products, and is interested in knowing more about them. You would make a bench-scale frequency standard to serve as a test bench for testing new ides.

3) Work with Photonic innovations.

Photonic Innovations Limited is a spin-out from the Physics Department of the University of Otago, specialising in spectroscopic detection of dangerous gases.

We invite applications from suitably qualified and enthusiastic students of science for a summer internship, to investigate and improve our products.

Research Problem

In order to improve the detection limits for weakly-absorbing gas species, Photonic Innovations’ products utilise a multi-pass optical cell, folding a very long optical path into a compact device. However, this arrangement is very sensitive to the alignment and positions of the optical components.

The project is to investigate, qualitatively and quantitatively, the changes in the optical cell as the temperature of the cell is varied over the broad range of temperatures that our devices might encounter in service. This will involve theoretical simulations and experiments to characterise the cell, and suggesting improvements to the design to minimise the effects of temperature changes.


The project will be completed in Photonic Innovations’ Dunedin Research and Development Laboratory for ten weeks over the summer break, starting early November 2015. The final result of the project will be a detailed report on the work completed, compiled from notes taken during the work. The standard University Summer Project stipend will be issued. The candidate must be intending to enrol as a student during the 2016 academic year.

E-mail your application to Dr Ojas Mahapatra,, attaching a Curriculum Vitae (including academic results) and a brief cover letter, to be received before 22nd October.

4) Much more …

Get in touch with Jevon if you want to see the lab and discuss other projects.