We are the quantum theory team led by Dr Erik Gauger at Heriot-Watt University.

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About our research

We study how harnessing quantum mechanical properties of nanostructures enables novel kinds of technologies:


Unlocking the ultimate limits of energy efficiency requires a physical understanding at level of single quanta of energy.


Information processing in the quantum world offers fascinating non-classical advantages.


Quantum systems are fragile, and this can exploited for probing the environment.

Group members

Dr Erik Gauger

Group leader, Assistant Professor at Heriot-Watt, and Member of the Royal Society of Edinburgh's Young Academy of Scotland.

Google Scholar

Dr Dominic Branford

Research Associate working on Hong-Ou-Mandel metrology and quantum imaging in close collaboration with the HWQuantum group.

Dr Nicholas Werren

Nick will be joining us soon to work on bio-inspired quantum-enhanced light-harvesting.

Dr Eleanor Dale Scerri

Associate group member whose primary home is the local Quantum Photonics Lab.

William Brown

PhD student working on quantum enhanced approaches to light harvesting with condensed matter nanostructures.

Hamish Scott

Working on Hong-Ou-Mandel metrology and quantum imaging in close collaboration with the HWQuantum group.

David Reichmuth

Associate member with primary home in Prof Erika Andersson's group. David is working on quantum communication as part of the Quantum Technology Hub on Communication.

Berke Ricketti

Berke's work is coherent vs incoherent laser sources and excitation together with the Edinburgh Mostly Quantum Lab.

Dominic Rouse

Dominic works on exciton energy transfer. He is jointly supervised with Brendon Lovett and based at St Andrews.

Scott Davidson

Scott is co-supervised by Felix Pollock in Melbourne. His project studies information theoretic approaches to optimising quantum transport.

Alexandre Coates

Alex is interested in quantum transport in membranes. He is jointly supervised with Brendon Lovett.

Group alumni

  • Dr Niclas Westerberg - Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Glasgow University, UK
  • Dr Jakub Sowa - Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Northwestern University, US
  • Dr Eleanor Dale Scerri - Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Quantum Photonics Lab at Heriot-Watt
  • Dr Amir Fruchtman - Senior Algorithm Engineer at Samsung SIRC, Israel
  • Dr Kieran Higgins - Big Data Software Engineer, US
  • Dr George Knee - Software Engineer at Magmo, UK / US
  • Dr Filip Auksztol - Product Manager at XTPL (nanoprinting technology), Poland
  • Dr Marcus Schaffry - Business Solutions and Support Engineer, European Patent Office, Germany

Collaborative network

Besides many of our IPaQS colleagues we have recently been interacting closely with with:
  • Dr Niclas Westerberg, Glasgow University
  • Dr Giuseppe Luca Celardo, BUAP, Mexico
  • Dr Brendon Lovett, University of St Andrews
  • Prof Simon Benjamin, Prof Andrew Briggs, Prof Harry Andersson FRS, University of Oxford
  • Prof Tom Stace, Prof Gerald Milburn, University of Queensland
  • Dr Ivan Kassal, University of Sydney
  • Dr Jan Mol, Queen Mary London
  • Dr Edward Laird, Lancaster
  • Dr Rafael Gomez-Bombarelli, Massachusett's Institute of Technology
  • Dr Ahsan Nazir, Photon Sciences Institute, Manchester
  • Dr Felix Pollock, Monash University Melbourne
  • Dr Neill Lambert, RIKEN Japan


We are looking for enthusiastic people to join our group!

HWU logo
EPSRC DTP Studentships

Opportunities for fully funded PhD studentships for UK and EU applicants exist. Places are filled on a competitive, rolling basis.

Selected publications

  • Understanding resonant charge transport through weakly coupled single-molecule junctionsJ. O. Thomas, B. Limburg, J. K. Sowa, K. Willick, J. Baugh, G. A. D. Briggs, E. M. Gauger, H. L. Anderson, J. A. Mol, Nature Communications 10 4628 (2019).
  • Fundamental limits to coherent photon generation with solid-state atom-like transitions, Z. X. Koong, D. Scerri, M. Rambach, T. S. Santana, S. I. Park, E. M. Gauger, B. D. Gerardot, Physical Review Letters 123, 167402 (2019).
  • Light Harvesting with Guide-Slide Superabsorbing Condensed-Matter Nanostructures, W. M. Brown, E. M. Gauger, The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters 10, 4323 (2019).
  • Attosecond-resolution Hong-Ou-Mandel interferometry, A. Lyons, G. C. Knee, E. Bolduc, T. Roger, J. Leach, E. M. Gauger, D. Faccio, Science Advances 4, eaap9416 (2018).
  • Projected gradient descent algorithms for quantum state tomography, E. Bolduc, G. C. Knee, E. M. Gauger, J. Leach, npj Quantum Information 3, 44 (2017).
  • Photocell Optimization Using Dark State Protection, A. Fruchtman, R. Gomez-Bombarelli, B. W. Lovett, E. M. Gauger, Physical Review Letters 117, 203603 (2016).
  • Superabsorption of light via quantum engineering, K. D. B. Higgins, S. C. Benjamin, T. Stace, G. J. Milburn, B. W. Lovett, E. M. Gauger, Nature Communications 5:4705 DOI: 10.1038/ncomms5705 (2014).
  • When amplification with weak values fails to suppress technical noise, G. C. Knee, E. M. Gauger, Physical Review X 4, 011032 (2014).
  • Practicality of Spin Chain Wiring in Diamond Quantum Technologies, Y. Ping, B. W. Lovett, S. C. Benjamin, E. M. Gauger. Physical Review Letters 110, 100503 (2013).
  • Violation of a Leggett-Garg inequality with ideal non-invasive measurements, G. C. Knee, S. Simmons, E. M. Gauger, J. J. L. Morton, H. Riemann, N. V. Abrosimov, P. Becker, H.-J. Pohl, K. M. Itoh, M. L. W. Thewalt, G. A. D. Briggs, S. C. Benjamin. Nature Communications 3:606 (doi: 10.1038/ncomms1614) (2012).
  • Proposed spin amplification for magnetic sensors employing crystal defects, M. Schaffry, E. M. Gauger, J. J. L. Morton, S. C. Benjamin. Physical Review Letters 107, 207210 (2011).
  • Sustained quantum coherence and entanglement in the avian compass, E. M. Gauger, E. Rieper, J. J. L. Morton, S. C. Benjamin, and V. Vedral. Physical Review Letters 106, 040503 (2011).

full publication list


Dr Erik M Gauger
Room DB 1.10
Institute of Photonics and Quantum Sciences
School of Engineering and Physical Sciences
Heriot-Watt University
Edinburgh EH14 4AS, United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)131 451 3345