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Offers Theses B.Sc./M.Sc.

B.Sc. topics:

We have numerous B.Sc. topics to choose from - usually they concern experimental components on the subject of laser spectroscopy, which are intended to further develop our scientific projects. These are, for example, low-temperature setups, experiment control modules, testing new lasers, etc.
As a rule, the topics are specified when the interested student is clear about the exact time when he or she will start working in the laboratory.
Please contact us!

Identification of an unknown molecular species using image analysis
(Contact person: C. Wellers)
In a particle trap, a single hydrogen molecule ion (invisible) is to be examined next to a beryllium ion (visible). The aim of this thesis is to verify the successful loading of such an ion with the aid of a CCD camera and subsequent image analysis. For this purpose, the oscillation of the 2-ion system is to be resonantly excited and observed. Expected content:

    Preparation of a two-ion system in the particle trap
    Determination of the resonant frequency of the ion system with the CCD camera
    Theoretical analysis of the expected frequencies as a function of the mass of the second ion
    Optimization and evaluation of the method

Programming skills are an advantage, but not a prerequisite.

Quantum cascade laser for molecular state preparation
(Contact person: C. Wellers)
A molecular hydrogen ion is studied in a particle trap and must be prepared in a suitable rotational and vibrational state for this purpose; this is known as "rotational cooling". The aim of this thesis is to stabilize the wavelength of a quantum cascade laser (QCL). For this purpose, spectroscopy is carried out on a reference gas (ammonia). Furthermore, the laser beam is to be coupled into the trap apparatus in order to irradiate the hydrogen ion. The cooling effect is to be demonstrated. Expected content:

    Absorption spectroscopy of ammonia gas
    Preparation of a Be-HD+ ion system in the particle trap
    Coupling of the QCLs beam into the trap apparatus
    Proof of rotational cooling
    Optimization and evaluation of the method

M.Sc. topics:
Theoretical topic:

High-resolution laser spectroscopy in a Penning trap
(Contact person: S. Schiller)
The theory of laser spectroscopy in a Penning trap is to be developed. This is a new research topic on which we are about to carry out the first experiments. We are currently collaborating with the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg. We expect this topic to be of great importance in the future. We therefore want to develop the theoretical foundations and carry out simulations that will pave the way for further experiments. The theoretical research will be developed in collaboration with Prof. G. Morigi (Univ. of Saarland); in addition, there will be many opportunities to discuss and develop ideas with experimental physicists, including Prof. S. Ulmer and Dr. C. Smorra from our institute.

Experimental topics:

Investigations on an optical atomic clock for experiments with the International Space Station ISS
(Contact persons: S. Schiller, C.-J. Kwong, V. Vogt)
As part of a research group of the German Research Foundation, we are the central team that is to develop an optical atomic clock and install and operate it at the Wettzell Fundamental Station (Bavaria). In this way, we want to demonstrate for the first time worldwide the comparison of two remote optical atomic clocks using a satellite as a transponder. The satellite is the ISS, the transponder provides microwave and optical transmission paths. The transponder is part of the ACES experiment. The ACES hardware will be "shot" to the ISS at the beginning of 2025.
At our atomic clock, we are developing a special laser with an ultra-stable frequency that scans ultra-cold atoms in an optical lattice. We are awarding a first M.Sc. thesis for the characterization, installation and operation of this laser as well as spectroscopy and data evaluation. For the optimization, dismantling and reconstruction of the apparatus and measurements in Wettzell, we award a second M.Sc. thesis.
The work could later be continued and expanded as part of a doctorate.

Resonant vibrational excitation of a beryllium ion in an ion trap using optical dipole force
(Contact person: C. Wellers)
A beryllium ion is stored in a radiofrequency trap. The aim of this thesis is to investigate the effect of an optical dipole force on the ion. This force is to be generated by a focused laser beam of suitable frequency. The question of whether the ion can be excited resonantly to oscillations in the harmonic trap potential and whether these are large enough for detection is to be investigated. A corresponding setup is to be created and optimized.

Real-time control of a quantum technology experiment
(Contact person: C. Wellers)
Modern ion trap experiments require fast and precise control of all components: Lasers, switches, radio frequency sources, etc. The aim of this thesis is to migrate the current Labview experiment controller on our Ion Trap II to an ARTIQ system (Advanced Real-Time Infrastructure for Quantum physics).
The function of the new control system is to be tested and optimized. The aim is to ensure that the entire system runs reliably and trouble-free for many hours. Data for spectroscopy on a stored molecule is to be collected and analyzed.
(Programming skills are required.)
The work could later be continued and expanded as part of a doctorate.

Rotational spectroscopy of HD+ molecular ions
(Contact person S. Alighanbari)
Precision spectroscopy of the HD+ molecular ion enables the highly accurate determination of the ratio of two important constants in physics: the mass of the electron and the mass of the proton. We have already performed rotational spectroscopy (Alighanbari et al 2020). Now we want to increase the accuracy. To this end, several hyperfine components are to be measured anew, and in particular the systematic effects are to be investigated. This M.Sc. thesis offers the opportunity to learn about molecular physics, relativistic physics, vacuum technology, radio frequency technology, data evaluation, data interpretation.
The work could later be continued and expanded as part of a doctorate.

A new type of apparatus for detecting dark matter using spectroscopy
(Contact person: R. Oswald)
Dark matter is the dominant form of matter in the universe. We are trying to detect it in the laboratory. Our approach is that DM is ultralight and thus acts like a quantum mechanical field that oscillates. It couples to fundamental constants and causes them to oscillate as well. We have already built two devices that search for these oscillations. Now we want to develop another one that promises greater sensitivity. It is based on an optical fiber in which a molecular gas is trapped. This is spectroscoped with an ultra-stable laser.
This M.Sc. thesis offers the opportunity to learn about molecular physics, laser spectroscopy, highly sensitive electronics, radio frequency technology, data evaluation and data interpretation.
The work could later be continued and expanded as part of a doctorate.

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