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Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin

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Research

My research explores themes of quantum coherence and many-body physics of light and matter, generally in the context of condensed-matter systems like semiconductor quantum wells, dots, and microcavities. I have a particular interest in quantum collective phenomena in the solid-state, for example Bose-Einstein condensation of polaritons and excitons. More generally I am interested in the possibilities for generating new physics by controlling the motion of photons and electrons as well as their interactions. Related areas of interest include optical angular momentum and structured light, decoherence and quantum control in solid-state systems, and photonic materials. Some of my achievements include: pioneering the use of the Dicke model of polariton condensation; explaining the linewidth of the polariton condensate; explaining the critical current of the quantum-Hall bilayer; and showing that photons can have a half-integer angular momentum.

If you want to know more most of my publications, and my student's theses, can be found here. If you're a potential PhD student, you might also want to check out the suggestions for projects on this page.

Outreach and press

My recent paper with Kyle Ballantine and John Donegan, showing that photons can have a half-integer angular momentum, was widely covered by the media and science bloggers. Most of the coverage can be found through the Altmetrics page. You can also hear me talking about this work on the radio show 'To the best of our knowledge' here, and we wrote summaries for Kudos and 2physics.com.