Jonathan Simon

Professor of physics, the James Frank Institute, and the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering
Jonathan Simon

Research and Scholarly Interests

Quantum optics, atomic physics, synthetic and topological matter

Lab Group

What drew you to PME?

The people and vision drew me to PME. Quantum science poses a unique set of challenges, and the PME set out from day one to build up a cohort of scientists exploring those questions from a variety of different perspectives. From theorists to experimentalists, and from cold atoms to nanofabrication, PME has built up a highly interdisciplinary and extremely interactive community of scientists, and it’s intellectually stimulating to be a part of it.

What are you most proud of accomplishing in your time at PME?

Scientifically, I am personally most proud of my group’s work developing twisted optical resonators as a platform for exploring topological physics with light. More broadly, I’m proud of the tremendous effort that all of us have put into identifying and recruiting colleagues and students to build the community in which we all now reside.

Where do you see PME in 10 years?

In 10 years PME will be a vibrant community tackling challenges in the most intellectually fertile areas of interdisciplinary science.

What breakthroughs do you anticipate will happen in your field in 10 years?

The rate of progress in quantum computing is rapidly accelerating, with atom tweezer arrays and quantum circuits apparently the winning platforms. My expectation is that, fairly soon, the scaling challenges will move to industry, while academic groups will focus on advances in individual qubit technologies, harnessing materials science, topological circuit engineering, and precise atomic control. More broadly, a number of other quantum science platforms, from defect centers to atomic heterostructures to optical resonators, will mature and find exciting applications in everything from quantum-enhanced metrology and sensing, to communication, and even quantum-enhanced astronomy.

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