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

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About our research

We study harnessing quantum mechanical properties of nanostructures and light. We are motivated by wishing to better understand the physical world, as well as enabling novel types 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.


Interactions with single quantum systems represents an exciting frontier and new access to visualing samples.

Group members

Prof Erik M Gauger

Group leader, Professor of Theoretical Physics in the Institute of Photonics and Quantum Sciendes at Heriot-Watt, and Member of the Royal Society of Edinburgh's Young Academy of Scotland.

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Dr Moritz Cygorek

Moritz is a senior Research Associate working on efficient and exact simulations of nanoscale quantum devices, as part of a joint project with collaborators at St Andrews.

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Dr Nicholas Werren

Nick's main home is now the Quantum Photonics Labs but he also remains an active associate member of qtt, continuing his work on biological and bio-inspired quantum light-harvesting.

Dr Dominic Branford

is interested in quantum-enhanced (optical) sensing, imaging and metrology.

Hannah Scott

explores protocols for quantum metrology, studying both optical setups and spin sensors.

Zeki Shaw

works on designing and engineeing photonic samples. He is jointly supervised with Luca Sapienza and Rob Benett from Glasgow and his main home is the Integrated Quantum Photonics Group

Zia Muhammad

currently works on dispersive, waveguide-assisted read out of double quantum dots. He is jointly supervised with Brendon Lovett and based at St Andrews.

Jindrich "Henry" Hajek

Henry's main interest is the learning of non-Markovian open systems dynamics from experimental data.

Priyankar Banerjee

researches experimentally measurable signatures of (collective) quantum effects in biological and bio-inspired nano-emitters.

David Craig

explores approaches for understanding, controlling, and optimising solid-state quantum devices using machine learning. He is primarily based in Oxford in the Natalia Ares Group.

Lily Anderson

investigates quantum effects in the light matter interaction of strongly coupled systems with applicaitons for light-harvesting.

Julian Wiercinski

is working on understanding the properties of strongly coupled indistinguishable quantum emitters and absorbers.

Stewart Wallace

uses Bayesian inference for Lindbladian learning from measured data. He is jointly supervised with Cristian Bonato from the Quantum Photonics Lab.

Collaborative network

Besides many of our IPaQS colleagues we have recently been interacting closely with with:
  • Dr Jakub Sowa, Univeristy of Texas
  • Prof Nir Keren, Prof Yossi Paltiel, Hebrew University of Jerusalem
  • Prof Daniele Faccio FRSE, Dr Niclas Westerberg, Glasgow University
  • Dr Giuseppe Luca Celardo, LENS, Florence
  • Dr Luca Sapienza, Glasgow University
  • Prof Brendon Lovett, Dr Jonathan Keeling, University of St Andrews
  • Prof Simon Benjamin, Prof Andrew Briggs, Prof Harry Andersson FRS, University of Oxford
  • Prof Tom Stace, University of Queensland
  • Dr Ivan Kassal, University of Sydney
  • Dr Jan Mol, Queen Mary London
  • Dr Rafael Gomez-Bombarelli, Massachusett's Institute of Technology
  • Dr Ahsan Nazir, Photon Sciences Institute, Manchester
  • Dr Felix Pollock, formerly Monash University Melbourne
  • Dr Neill Lambert, RIKEN Japan

Group alumni

    • Dr Dominic Branford - now back with us
    • Dr Niclas Westerberg - now Postdoctoral Research Fellow (1851) at Glasgow University, UK
    Doctoral Students
    • Ms Nicole Farrier - now at BAE Systems, UK
    • Dr Alexandre Coates - now an analyst for the Civil Service of the UK
    • Dr Scott Davidson - now Senior Tech Lead at StackHPC, UK
    • Dr Berke Ricketti - now Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Lethbridge, Canada
    • Dr Dominic Rouse - now EPSRC Doctoral Prize Fellow at the University of Glasgow, UK
    • Dr William Brown - now working on Commodity Corporate Exotics and Solutions at BNP Paribas, UK
    • Dr Jakub Sowa - now Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Texas, US
    • Dr Eleanor Dale Scerri - now Junior Technical Artist at Ubisoft Blue Byte, Germany
    • Dr Amir Fruchtman - now Senior Algorithm Engineer at SAIPS, Israel
    • Dr Kieran Higgins - now Big Data Software Engineer, US
    • Dr George Knee - now Software Engineer at Magmo, UK / US
    • Dr Marcus Schaffry - now Business Solutions and Support Engineer, European Patent Office, Germany
    Research Project Students
    • Mr Jindrich Hajek (MPhys)
    • Ms Laura Rintoul (MPhys)
    • Mr Martin Damynov (MPhys)
    • Ms Jemma Callaghan (MPhys)
    • Ms Romane Moulin (MPhys)
    • Mr Jamie Nash (MPhys)
    • Ms Alicia Fallows (BSc Hons)
    • Mr Robert Hay (MPhys)
    • Mr Robert Chirnside (BSc Hons)
    • Dr Filip Auksztol (MMat)


We are always looking for enthusiastic and talented people to join our group!

PhD Studentships

Opportunities for fully funded PhD studentships for UK and international applicants regularly exist. Places are filled on a competitive, rolling basis. Please get in touch if interested.

We are open to discussing a broad range of project topics related to our research interests (see recent publications for an overview).

Postdoc Openings

We will be adversiting an opportunity to work on the project "Exploring bio-inspired collective light-matter interactions in the solid-state" supported by the Leverhulme Trust soon. Get in touch or check back soon if interested.

Fellowship Applications

We are happy to support applications and host recipients of personal research fellowships (e.g. URF, Marie Curie, 1851, Newton International etc).

Selected publications

A complete list of publications can be found on

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Prof 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