Advanced Optics

Course Aim

To introduce students to fundamental and advanced topics in modern optics and photon physics.

Course Description

Review of geometrical optics; wave properties of light and the wave equation; Helmholtz equation; wave optics, including Fresnel and Fraunhofer diffraction, transfer functions, coherence, auto and cross-correlation; Gaussian and non-Gaussian beam profiles; quantum optics and photon statistics; spin squeezing; applications of optics including fiber optics, laser resonators, laser amplifiers, non-linear optics, and optical trapping; quantum properties of light; interaction of photons and atoms.

Course Contents

1 Review of classical optics
2 Ray and wave optics
3 Laser optics and Gaussian beams
4 Non-Gaussian beam optics
5 Fourier optics
6 Electromagnetic optics
7 Nonlinear optics
8 Lasers, resonators and cavities
9 Photon optics
10 Photon statistics and squeezed light
11 Interaction of photons with atoms
12 Experimental applications: Optical trapping
13 Experimental applications: Laser resonator design
14 Experimental applications: Light propagation in optical fibers and nanofibers
15 Experimental applications: laser cooling of alkali atoms
Laboratory Exercises: Mach-Zehnder & Fabry-Perot Interferometry; Fraunhofer & Fresnel Diffraction; Single-mode and Multimode Fiber Optics; Polarization of Light; Optical Trapping & Optical Tweezers


Homework: 60%, Final Exam, 40%.

Prerequisites or Prior Knowledge

Quantum Mechanics


Fundamentals of Photonics, by Saleh and Teich (2007) Wiley

Reference Books

Quantum Optics, an Introduction, by Mark Fox (2006) Oxford University Press
Optics, by Eugen Hecht (2001) Addison Wesley


Alternate years course: AY2024
Enrollment cap of 8 students

Research Specialties