2020 Special Topics in Physics IX

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Academic unit or major
Graduate major in Physics
Harada Kenichi 
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Course description and aims

The light has several properties such as frequency, polarization, and phase and so on. The light measurement using these properties is used for a lot of fields. In the lecture, the several methods of spectroscopy are treated theoretically through the interaction between atom and light. Moreover, the principle of the Michelson interference and cavity of light for detecting gravitational waves is explained including the constitution of gravitational-wave detectors.

Student learning outcomes

The aim is to understand the characteristics of light and various kinds of measurement methods using laser light. Especially, it is significant to understand the interaction between atoms and light, laser cooling techniques and gravitational-wave detection techniques.


Quantum optics, Electromagnetism, Laser lights

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

Powerpoint and whiteboard are used for the explanation.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Basic property of lasers The light property and several kinds of lasers are introduced.
Class 2 Laser measurement A variety of measurement methods using lasers are explained.
Class 3 Semiclassical theory of atom-light interaction The absorption and dispersion of light caused by an interaction between light and an atom are explained. The theory is treated as semiclassical.
Class 4 Fundamental of laser cooling and trapping of atoms The change in the momentum of atoms caused due to the absorption and emission of light is discussed. Further, general methods to trap atoms such as magneto-optical trapping is introduced.
Class 5 Coherent and squeezed states of the light The squeezed state that appears when the electromagnetic field is treated in quantum theory is explained. Moreover, the generation method of the squeezed state is also introduced.
Class 6 Detection method of the gravitational wave The property of the gravitational wave and the detection method using the Michelson interferometer are explained.
Class 7 Present status of the gravitational wave detectors Present status of the gravitational-wave detectors are introduced.

Out-of-Class Study Time (Preparation and Review)

To enhance effective learning, students are encouraged to spend approximately 100 minutes preparing for class and another 100 minutes reviewing class content afterwards (including assignments) for each class.
They should do so by referring to textbooks and other course material.


Quantum optics, M. Matsuoka

Reference books, course materials, etc.

Laser measurement, T. Kushida

Assessment criteria and methods

Total of attendance and report points

Related courses

  • PHY.C449 : Laser Physics

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

PHY.Q207 : Introduction to Quantum Mechanics(Lecture)、PHY.E205 : Electromagnetism(Lecture)

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