Results of NCN calls for proposals

Several projects that will be conducted with KL FAMO apparatus was avarded by the NCN grants

dr hab Piotr Wcisło, prof. UMK


project: Ultra-accurate spectroscopy of simple molecules for fundamental studies – cryogenic cavity-enhanced spectrometer

The main goal of this project is to study the structure of the simplest molecules (molecular hydrogen) at the unprecedented level of accuracy. The simplest molecules are of particular interest for fundamental studies mainly because their structure can be calculated from first principles, and hence they can be used to test not only the quantum mechanics but also the quantum electrodynamics for molecules. Furthermore, for the same reasons, the simple molecules can serve as unique sensors of new hypothetical forces or additional special dimensions. To reach this goal we will develop a high-power laser source coupled with an optical spectrometer that operates at cryogenic conditions (down to 10 K).

mgr Maria Gieysztor


project: Diamond-based fundamental research on light-matter interaction with single photons

The emerging world of quantum technologies aims at creation and development of practical applications basing on the consequences of quantum physics. Among these one can find quantum communication, quantum computing, quantum metrology or quantum imaging. The main goal is to propose and implement solutions by taking advantage of quantum phenomena like quantum superposition or quantum entanglement. These however, can lead to very surprising and even counterintuitive implications, research on which is interesting both from fundamental and practical perspective.

In the project, light-matter interaction investigation with single photons and color centers in diamond is going to be performed. Different ways of single-photon generation are possible including quantum dots, nitrogen-vacancy centers or attenuated laser beams. The proposed project however, envisages heralded single-photon source based on spontaneous parametric down-conversion (SPDC) process. The SPDC process occurs when a high-energy photon travelling through a non-linear media spontaneously decays into two low energy photons. When spatially resolvable, the generated photons can be detected separately and the detection of one of them heralds the existence of the other one. In this way, heralded single photons can be generated and subsequently directed onto a diamond sample with color centers. Nitrogen-vacancy (NV) color centers are of particular interest thanks to their peculiar optical properties making them relatively easily accessible with single photons.

In the first part of the project, the superradiance of color centers in diamond under single-photon illumination will be analyzed. Superradiance is a quantum phenomenon where an ensemble of emitters interacts with a common light field and collective behavior is observed rather than fluorescence emission of independent emitters. The aim is to demonstrate collective emission of color centers in diamond under single-photon treatment. The second part aims at verifying the possibility of beating the diffraction limit using spatially correlated photons generated by an SPDC-based source. Resolution in standard fluorescence microscopy is fundamentally limited. Here, quantum correlations between the SPDC-generated photons are expected to beat the classical limitations, improve the resolution and enable for more detailed microscope images.

dr Akiko Nishiyama


project: Research of origin of life with advanced molecular spectroscopy based on optical frequency combs

The project aims to reveal the formation process of formamide employing an optical frequency comb-based advanced spectrometer. Formamide has been astronomically observed in interstellar space, and expected to play a significant role as a precursor of nucleobases which syntheses ribonucleic acid. The investigation of formation process of formamide and other precursors will bring the new knowledge and will help to verify the hypothesis  about the origin of life in the universe.