Ao. Univ. Prof. Dr.
Institut für Physik
Universitätsplatz 5, 8010 Graz
I am a theoretical
solid-state physicist, interested in semiconductor and metallic
nanostructures, and atom chips. I obtained my PhD in Theoretical
Physics at Graz university in 1997. I then moved as a Postdoc to the
nanoscience group Modena headed by Elisa Molinari, where I
spent the years 1997 - 2000 working on semiconductor quantum dots. In
2001 I joined the Solid State Theory group in Graz headed by Walter
Pötz. In the same year I obtained my Habilitation in Theoretical
Physics. Currently I am Professor at the Institute of Physics
in Graz. From 2006 to 2016 I have been Associated Editor of the European Physical
The research of my
group is concerned with the theory of nanostructures. These structures
consist of several thousands to millions of atoms, and have sizes
of a few nanometers in each spatial direction. For such small objects
the physical properties can differ appreciably from those of larger
pieces of matter.
- In semiconductor quantum dots,
quantum effects are known to dominate the optical and transport
properties. Our group is particularly interested in possible quantum
computation and quantum communication applications. We investigate how
in these structures quantum coherence can be created and manipulated,
and how it decays through interactions with the solid-state
- In cooperation with the experimental nanooptics group in Graz, we study the optical properties of metallic nanoparticles.
Due to the different length scales, namely nanometers for the metallic
nanoparticles and micrometers for the light, the light-matter coupling
is in the nearfield regime and becomes drastically enhanced. This
allows to tailor the optical properties of light emitters
(molecules, collodial quantum dots, etc.) placed in the vicinity
of metallic nanoparticles, which might be beneficial for novel
- A more recent research activity is concerned with atom chips.
Here, current flowing through microstructured wires mounted
on a solid-state chip produces magnetic fields that allow to trap and
manipulate ultracold atoms or Bose Einstein condensates in the vicinity
of the chip. Thermal current noise in the metallic wires causes
magnetic field fluctuations at the positions of the atoms, and
introduces decoherence. We have shown that superconducting atom chips
would allow to almost completely suppress such decoherence. Other work
has been devoted to optimal quantum control of Bose Einstein
condensates in such atom chips.
See also feature on nanooptics in UNIZEIT (in german, 4 MB).
Detailed research description
Selected recent publications.
- A. Hörl, G. Haberfehlner, A. Trügler, F. Schmidt, U. Hohenester, and G. Kothleitner:
Tomographic reconstruction of the photonic environment of plasmonic nanoparticles;
Nature Commun. 8, 37 (2017). (PDF)
- M. J. Lagos, A. Trügler, U. Hohenester, and P. E. Batson:
Mapping vibrational surface and bulk modes in a single nanocube;
Nature 543, 533 (2017). Nature
- G. Soavi et al.:
Exciton-exciton annihilation and biexciton stimulated emission in graphene nanoribbons;
Nature Communications 7, 11010 (2016). (PDF)
- G. Haberfehlner, A. Trügler, F. P. Schmidt, A. Hörl, F. Hofer, U. Hohenester, and G. Kothleitner:
Correlated 3D nanoscale mapping and simulation of coupled plasmonic nanoparticles;
Nano Lett. 15, 7726 (2015). (PDF)
- F. Schmidt, H. Ditlbacher, U. Hohenester, A. Hohenau, F. Hofer, and J. Krenn:
Universal Dispersion of Scaling of Surface Plasmon in Flat Nanostructures;
Nature Communications 8, 3604 (2014).
- A. Hörl, A. Trügler, and U. Hohenester:
Tomography of particle plasmons for electron energy loss spectroscopy;
Phys. Rev. Lett. 101, 076801 (2013).