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    Electron spin could be the key to high-temperature superconductivity

    today - Mediacom EPFL scientists take a significant step in our understanding of superconductivity by studying the strange quantum events in a unique superconducting material.

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    Middleware 2014 and 10-Years Best Paper Award for Rachid Guerraoui

    yesterday - IC - Prizes & Awards Professor Rachid Guerraoui earns two awards at Middleware: the Middleware Best Paper Award 2014 and the Middleware 10-Years Best Paper Award.

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    Computer Journal Wilkes Award for Serge Vaudenay

    yesterday - IC - Prizes & Awards Professor Serge Vaudenay won the Computer Journal Wilkes Award 2014.

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    Building a new nanowire for solar cells

    yesterday - SB | Basic Sciences EPFL scientists have been able to make the first-ever nanowires from a “superstar” material that could greatly improve the efficiency of solar cells.

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    Record Investment in EPFL Start-ups

    yesterday - Mediacom EPFL start-ups have raised private capital exceeding 220 million Swiss francs in 2014, which is twice the amount of the previous year. The number of young companies created also doubled.

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    Controllable coherent perfect absorption

    16.12.14 - Nanophotonics and Metrology We exploit the versatility provided by metal–dielectric composites to demonstrate controllable coherent perfect absorption (CPA) or anti-lasing in a slab of heterogeneous medium. The slab is illuminated by coherent light from both sides, at the same angle of incidence and the conditions required for CPA are investigated as a function of the different system parameters. Our calculations clearly elucidate the role of absorption as a necessary prerequisite for CPA. We further demonstrate the controllability of the CPA frequency to the extent of having the same at two distinct frequencies even in presence of dispersion, rendering the realization of anti-lasers more flexible.

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    Making the invisible visible!

    16.12.14 - Nanophotonics and Metrology We investigate the mediation of symmetry-forbidden atomic transitions using plasmonic nanostructures. We show that the excitation of the electric dipole-forbidden, quadrupole-allowed 62S1/2−52D5/2 transition in cesium may be enhanced by more than 6 orders of magnitude in the intense, inhomogeneous near field of a plasmonic nanoantenna. Using optical reciprocity, the enhancement can be understood to apply to spontaneous emission as well, allowing the fast and efficient optical detection of excited atoms.

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    Anisotropic Purcell factor

    16.12.14 - Nanophotonics and Metrology The mechanism of using the anisotropic Purcell factor to control the spontaneous emission linewidths in a four-level atom is theoretically demonstrated; if the polarization angle bisector of the two dipole moments lies along the axis of large/small Purcell factor, destructive/constructive interference narrows/widens the fluorescence center spectral lines. Large anisotropy of the Purcell factor, confined in the subwavelength optical mode volume, leads to rapid spectral line narrowing of atom approaching a metallic nanowire, nanoscale line width pulsing following periodically varying decay rates near a periodic metallic nanostructure, and dramatic modification on the spontaneous emission spectrum near a custom-designed resonant plasmon nanostructure. The combined system opens a good perspective for applications in ultracompact active quantum devices.

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    Double resonant plasmonic antenna

    16.12.14 - Nanophotonics and Metrology We present a novel plasmonic antenna geometry – the double resonant antenna (DRA) – that is optimized for second-harmonic generation (SHG). This antenna is based on two gaps coupled to each other so that a resonance at the fundamental and at the doubled frequency is obtained. Furthermore, the proximity of the localized hot spots allows for a coupling and spatial overlap between the two field enhancements at both frequencies. Using such a structure, both the generation of the second-harmonic and its re-emission into the far-field are significantly increased when compared with a standard plasmonic dipole antenna. Such DRA are fabricated in aluminium using electron beam lithography and their linear and nonlinear responses are studied experimentally and theoretically.

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    Professorship at the Stockholm University for a former PhD student

    16.12.14 - CDM | Management of Technology Dr. Olov Isaksson has been hired by Stockholm Business School, Stockholm University, Sweden as assistant professor in Operations Management.

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