Welcome to the Rydberg Quantum Devices team lead by Dr. Jonathan Pritchard, an EPSRC Quantum Technology Fellow at the University of Strathclyde.


Rydberg atoms are atoms excited to extremely large principal quantum numbers resulting in giant atoms offering exaggerated properties including enormous electric-dipole moments in the microwave frequency range. Our research is focused on developing new quantum technologies that exploit these Rydberg atomic dipoles via coupling to superconducting circuits in a hybrid approach to quantum information processing and in developing atomic gas sensors for precision microwave field detection and imaging.

Please contact jonathan.pritchard@nullstrath.ac.uk if you are interested in working in within one of our research areas – we have PhD and Postdoc Positions Currently Available:


Hybrid Quantum Interface – Atoms coupled to superconductors

HQT200x200 This project seeks to develop next-generation hardware for quantum networking by using atomic ensembles coupled to superconducting microwave circuits to generate, store and entangle photons in a single chip-based device. This offers a direct route to the creation of scalable quantum networks, in addition to future integration with ultra-fast superconducting qubits to enable distributed quantum computing.

Team: Katie McDonnell and Lindsey Keary

Microwave Field Sensing using Rydberg atoms

RF fields in the microwave and terahertz domain are ubiquitous for security and communications, however test equipment requires frequent recalibration and careful understanding of the perturbations caused by the antenna used for measurement. This new project, a collaboration between Strathclyde, Durham and NPL, seeks to develop new all-optical field sensors operating in the microwave and terahertz domain using Rydberg atoms in a thermal vapour to act as microscopic antenna enabling metal-free probing, sub-wavelength imaging resolution and the ability to implement a traceable SI calibration offering superior sensitivity compared to existing technologies.

Team: Currently hiring – see below


Research Associate in RF Sensing and Imaging using Rydberg atoms

Applications are invited for a postdoctoral research associate to work on a new project developing novel sensors for the detection and imaging of RF fields using Rydberg atoms as part of the Rydberg Quantum Devices group lead by Dr. Jonathan Pritchard. Rydberg atoms have extremely large electric dipole moments in the microwave and terahertz domain which act as microscopic antennae offering key advantages over existing technologies including the ability to achieve sub-wavelength resolution, traceable SI calibration of field-strength and all-optical detection. The main goals of the project include development of a portable sensor in collaboration with the University of Durham featuring optimised vapour cell geometries for use in measurement campaigns at National Physical Laboratory (NPL) Teddington to provide benchmarking of the absolute accuracy of the atomic gas sensors. Additionally, new techniques to achieve sensitivities at the quantum projection noise limit will be explored alongside application of the sensors to microwave communication protocols including WiFi.

For more details contact jonathan.pritchard@nullstrath.ac.uk

Apply through StrathVacancies, closing date 15th November 2018.

ARC:Alkali Rydberg Calculator

An open-source python library for calculating properties of Alkali Rydberg atoms developed with Nikola Sibalic, Charles Adams and Kevin Weatherill at JQC in Durham. Full details on the arXiv:1612.05529 – download source from GitHub or use the online Atom Calculator by following the link below.

Recent Publications


We acknowledge funding from the following sources: