OSE Seminar by Dr. Stephen Boyd on Single photon and particle detection with SQUIDs and spins

Departmental News

Dr. Stephen Boyd

Posted: February 26, 2023

Speaker: Dr. Stephen Boyd of UNM Physics and Astronomy

Date: Thursday, March 2, 2023 

Time:  12:15 PM - 1:15 PM

Location: PAIS, Room 2540 & Zoom

Ultra-low temperatures provide a uniquely-powerful physics toolbox that is powering an increasing range of cutting-edge physics research in quantum computing, cosmology,  neutrinos, particle dark matter, and improved spectroscopies for the characterization of materials and biomaterials. This talk will describe a key subset of low-temperature physics that achieves photon and particle spectroscopy with energy resolution limited only by thermodynamic fluctuations. We will discuss calorimetry, its fundamental noise limit, Josephson junctions, and how Superconducting QUantum Interference Devices (SQUIDs) actually work. If time permits, I'll also briefly describe a new approach to adapt our lab's magnetic microcalorimeter designs down to sub-eV energy resolution, to achieve photon-number-resolution at telecoms wavelengths.


Stephen Boyd is a research professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at UMM. Although our lab is probably best known for its failed attempt to upgrade PAÍS floor 2 with a swimming pool, our research interests include ultra-low temperature physics and applied physics, including superconducting electronics, SQUIDs, low-temperature magnetometry and microcalorimetry, photon and particle detection, and cryogenic technology to keep it all cold.