Participant 7 – INFN

National Institute for Nuclear Physics

The National Institute for Nuclear Physics (INFN) is the Italian research agency dedicated to the study of the fundamental constituents of matter and the laws that govern them, under the supervision of the Ministry of Education, Universities and Research (MIUR). It conducts theoretical and experimental research in the fields of subnuclear, nuclear and astroparticle physics. All of the INFN’s research activities are undertaken within a framework of international competition, in close collaboration with Italian universities on the basis of solid academic partnerships spanning decades. Fundamental research in these areas requires the use of cutting-edge technology and instruments, developed by the INFN at its own laboratories and in collaboration with industries. Groups from the Universities of Rome, Padua, Turin, and Milan founded the INFN on 8thAugust 1951 to uphold and develop the scientific tradition established during the 1930s by Enrico Fermi and his school, with their theoretical and experimental research in nuclear physics. In the latter half of the 1950s the INFN designed and built the first Italian accelerator, the electron synchrotron developed in Frascati, where its first national laboratory, LNF, was set up. During the same period, the INFN began to participate in research into the construction and use of ever-more powerful accelerators being conducted by CERN, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research, in Geneva. Today the INFN employs some 5,000 scientists whose work is recognised internationally not only for their contribution to various European laboratories, but also to numerous research centres worldwide.

Website of the National Institute for Nuclear Physics:

Website of the National Laboratory of Frascati (LNF):

Website of the Cryogenic Laboratory for Detectors (COLD lab):

Researches involved in the SUPERGALAX project

Dr. Claudio Gatti (gender male)

Claudio Gatti obtained his degree in Physics at Rome University “La Sapienza” and the Ph.D. in Physics at Pisa University in 2003. He is staff researcher at Laboratori Nazionali di Frascati (LNF) of INFN the Italian Institute of Nuclear Physics. His background is in experimental Particle Physics. He collaborated with the KLOE and ATLAS experiments. In ATLAS he was the Analysis Coordinator of the Italian Community. He is now Local Coordinator of the LNF unit of QUAX, an INFN funded experiment searching for galactic axions. Recently, he proposed a new experiment, KLASH, a large haloscope for galactic-axion searches in the mass range 0.3-1 meV. He is main proposer and National Coordinator of SIMP, an INFN funded project aiming at detecting single microwave photons in experiments for axion searches. He has been supervisor of several students for their Laurea thesis, signed more than 700 referred papers and has h-index 74.

Dr. Carlo Ligi (gender male)

Physicist, cryogenic engineer – Master degree in astrophysics (Univ. of Roma Tre, Rome, 1999). Staff member of the cryogenic service of the Accelerator Division at the Frascati Laboratories (INFN) since 2001. Expert on ultralow temperatures and cooling with dilution refrigerators. He has been the cryogenic responsible of the RAP experiment (INFN-LNF), head of the cryogenic group of the Super-B factory and responsible of the wiring task in the cryogenic group of CUORE (INFN-LNGS), where he also worked at the commissioning of the Dilution Refrigerator. Beside this activity, he also worked on magnetic design of the steering magnets for the SPARC accelerator and for the preliminary design of the main dipoles of the DAFNE-2 projects. He participate to QUAX and SIMP projects and is one of the proposer of KLASH. He published about 140 papers on international journals and conference proceedings.

Dr Daniele Di Gioacchino (gender male)

Physicist in Condensed Matter Physics (Univ.‘Sapienza’of Roma, 1984). Permanent position as a staff scientist at the INFN-LNF in Research Division since 1989. Expert in superconductivity, magnetism. He uses ‘He liquid’ cryostats with superconducting magnets technique. Performed researches devoted to realize superconducting accelerating bulk/thin film cavities in Nb, NbZr and Nb3Sn, studied RF losses of superconducting materials and realized Josephson junctions. He has produced different gradiometers to measure the multi-harmonic A.C. magnetic susceptibility as a function of the temperature, DC magnetic field, AC frequencies using flux liquid helium cryostats to evaluate flux dynamics (flux pinning states, flux flow) of superconducting phases, moreover, it has also developed inserts for the electric transport characterization of materials and devices in function of the electric current and temperature in the high magnetic field. It has been a ’national responsible’ of some INFN projects approved by the National Commission V of the INFN named ‘PRESS-MAG-O’ (2005-2008), ‘MUEXC’ (2009-2012) and ‘SQUARE-1’ (2014-2015). Since 2007, he has been responsible of a cryogenic laboratory for magnetic characterization named ‘LAMPS’ in 2012 now merged into a new cryogenic laboratory (COLD, cryogenic laboratory for detectors).

He studied the possibility of producing a micro-magnetic SQUID gradiometer with x-y-z-θ movement to mapping magnetic microstructures in SNS superconducting arrays between Nb micrometric islands, for future particle new detectors. He has some publications on high IF magazines. He collaborates to QUAX and SIMP and is one of the proposer of KLASH.

He published about 150 papers on international journals and conference proceedings.

Dr David Alesini (gender male)

David Alesini got is PhD in “Applied Electromagnetism and Electro-physical science” at the University of Rome “La Sapienza” in 2003 with a dissertation on “Beam Control and Manipulation with Microwave Devices in Particle Accelerators”.

He his staff of the Accelerator Division at LNF-INFN in Frascati where his is head of the “Vacuum group” since 2009. Since 18 years he is working on physics and technology of particle accelerators and, in particular, on beam dynamics, beam coupling impedances, accelerators operation, RF structures design, realization and test such as injection/extraction kickers, RF deflectors and accelerating structures.

He proposed and designed several new devices now in operation in different particle accelerators (CTF3 at CERN, DAFNE and SPARC at LNF-INFN, FERMI in Trieste, PSI in Switzerland, Pegasus Lab at UCLA in Los Angeles).

He has been involved, mainly, in the INFN projects DAΦNE and SPARC at LNF and CTF3 project at CERN. He has been Deputy Responsible of the operation of the DAΦNE collider from 2006 to 2009 and, in the framework of the ELI-NP Gamma Beam System, in construction in Magurele (Bucharest, Romania), he is now responsible of the work package on RF structures and LINAC Deputy Machine Leader.

In 2016 joined the QUAX project on axion research working in particular on radiofrequency cavities for axion detection. He participate to the SIMP project and is one of the proposer of KLASH.

In the framework of the project AMICI oriented on technology transfer and financed by the European Community (Call Horizon 2020 H2020 INFRAINNOV-2016-2017) he is the responsible of the work task on “Identify existing good practises, and barriers to effective engagement, between Industry and the Technological Infrastructures”.

He published about 200 papers on international journals and conference proceedings.

Dr. Giuseppe Ruoso (gender male)

Giuseppe Ruoso is an experimental physicist which activity in mainly dedicated to the study of the quantum vacuum and the search for axions. He got his Master Degree at the University of Trieste in 1991 with a laboratory search for axion like particles by using optical techniques. In 1995 he received his PhD from the University of Padova by devising an apparatus to study the magnetic birefringence of the vacuum as predicted by Quantum Electrodynamics. After several years of postdoc fellows with different institutions, he is a researcher of  the Laboratori Nazionali di Legnaro of INFN (Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare) since 2002. His main achievements include the first and only measurement of the Casimir effect in the plane parallel configuration, improved limits on the coupling of the axion with the photons, the best limit on the neutrality of matter (electron – proton charge asymmetry), first realization of a cryogenic optical frequency standard.

Currently he is involved with the experiment QUAX for the search of dark matter axion by exploiting the axion electron coupling, and with the experiment PVLAS for the measurement of the magnetic birefringence of the vacuum.

Dr. Giovanni Carugno (gender male)

 Giovanni Carugno is an experimental physicist which activity in mainly dedicated to the study of the quantum vacuum and the search for axions. He got his Master Degree at the University of Roma “ La Sapienza” in 1986 with a laboratory search for heavy neutrino decay made at Cern and Brokhaven National lab. In 1987 he received a fellowship from CERN working on UA1 and ICARUS detectors mainly devoted to the study of room temperature and cryogenic temperature detectors based on Liquid TMP and Liquid Argon under the supervison of Prof C. Rubbia and M. Ferroluzzi. Once researcher at INFN Padova Section he spend two years at PSI as visitor scientist making an experiment on pion radiative decay and one year at Cern and ENSPC in Paris with Professor Charpak to develop a gamma camera for scintigraphic imaging purposes. Since 1990 is research at INFN Padova Section. His main achievements include the first and only measurement of the Casimir effect in the plane parallel configuration, improved limits on the coupling of the axion with the photons, the best limit on the neutrality of matter (electron – proton charge asymmetry), many detectors realization for high energy physics investigations.

Currently he is involved with the experiment QUAX for the search of dark matter axion by exploiting the axion electron coupling, and with the experiment Demiurgos for the measurement of very small energy release in matter.

Description of significant infrastructure and major items of technical equipment, relevant to theSUPERGALAX project

The research team setup up a cryogenic laboratory (COLD, CryOgenic Laboratory for Detectors) combining the experiences in supeconductivity, cryogenics, bolometers, radiofrequency and particle physics available at LNF, with the main focus on light dark matter detection such as axions. The COLD laboratory is equipped with: Vector Network Analyser up to 20 GHz (VNA up to 100 GHz are available at the radiofrequency group of LNF); signal generators; low noise amplifiers; low temperature thermomethers and gaussmeters with readout electronics. LNF acquired a dilution refrigerator-based cryogen-free cryostat, capable to cool samples down to 8 mK and with a cooling power of 0.6 mW at 100 mK. The cryostat feature also a fast-insertion tube and has an experimental space with dimensions d=500 mm and h=500 mm. It can host a SC magnet to generate a magnetic field of ~10 T. Its delivery is expected in spring 2019. In this laboratory are present other cryostats: first, with temperature control via a cold He flux from liquid helium. There are possible different set-ups with 300K-4.2K temperature range, is present a NbTi superconducting magnet with 0-8Tesla DC magnetic field amplitude, experimental cylinder volume is 600cm3; second, with manual dipping temperature control in liquid He bath in the 300K-4.2K range, the experimental cylinder volume is 2400cm3; third, a portable cryostat in 4.2K liquid He bath with 4 windows, to radiation test experiments on electron DAFNE-Beam Test Facility (BTF) line or UV-IR radiation. In particular, there are operative other cryogenic systems for magnetic characterization and transport properties to test materials and devices: 1) low frequency AC multi-harmonic magnetic susceptibility in function of f(Hz), Hac(Gauss), Hdc(Tesla), T(K); 2) AC and DC electrical resistance in function of T(K), Hdc(Tesla); 3) I-V characteristics versus of T(K), Hdc(Tesla). The group has experience in simulation of microwave systems in particular with the ASNYS HFSS code available at LNF.

The LNL Laboratory of INFN in Padova spans over different activities so it is well standard equippement as high vacuum pumping systems and vacuum chambers, two diluition refrigerator units, 5 liquid helium dewar of different sizes. We cover a large range of EM frequency from low frequency where we routinely operate a SQUID system up to Microwave range with cryogenic electronic up to 40 GHz. We have 3 optical tables where we operate 10 laser system in CW mode covering the frequency from 190 nm up to 1100 nm almost countinously with a bandwidth of 100 MHz and we have 1 laser operating at fs pulse regime with a rep. rate of 80 MHz and 2 psec laser operating at GHz rate with pulses within a psec range. To make systematic study on radiation matter interaction two electron guns at 100 Kev and milliamp current are under our control.

Participant 5 – KIT

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology

The Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) is a public research university and one of the largest research and education institutions in Germany. KIT is one of the leading universities in the Engineering and Natural Sciences in Europe, ranking sixth overall in citation impact. As part of the German Universities Excellence Initiative KIT was accredited with the excellence status in 2006. In the 2011, performance ranking of scientific papers, Karlsruhe ranked first in Germany and among the top ten universities in Europe in engineering and natural sciences.

The KIT partner group have internationally established expertise in the field of experimental low-temperature physics. During the last decade, the KIT group led by Prof. A. Ustinov (PI) have focused on the investigation of quantum-coherent dynamics of superconducting phase qubits, flux qubits and transmons. They were first to demonstrate frequency domain multiplexing readout of superconducting qubits back in 2011 -a crucial step towards scalable quantum architecture. Another visible and internationally established expertise of the KIT group is in coherent manipulation of microscopic two-level defects in superconducting qubits. More recent work relevant for this proposal is the first implementation of a quantum metamaterial using 20 superconducting flux qubits.

Website of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology:

Researches involved in the SUPERGALAX project

Prof. Dr. Alexey Ustinov (Gender male), a principal investigator for the group, has been in professor at KIT since 2008. His major field is experimental research on superconducting quantum circuits. Alexey Ustinov and his group have an internationally established expertise in the field of experimental low-temperature physics, nonlinear dynamics of Josephson junctions and arrays, high-frequency experiments with superconducting devices, studies of macroscopic quantum effects in these structures, and superconducting metamaterials. Alexey Ustinov has published over 300 papers in peer reviewed journals receiving over 5000 citations, and has an h-index of 39. The research of his group has been funded over the past years by the German Science Foundation (DFG), Volkswagen Foundation, various funding programs from USA, Russia, and the EU.

Description of significant infrastructure and major items of technical equipment, relevant to theSUPERGALAX project

The KIT partner group have internationally established expertise in the field of experimental low-temperature physics. During the last decade, the KIT group led by Prof. A. Ustinov (PI) have focused on the investigation of quantum-coherent dynamics of superconducting phase qubits, flux qubits and transmons. They were first to demonstrate frequency domain multiplexing readout of superconducting qubits back in 2011 -a crucial step towards scalable quantum architecture. Another visible and internationally established expertise of the KIT group is in coherent manipulation of microscopic two-level defects in superconducting qubits. More recent work relevant for this proposal is the first implementation of a quantum metamaterial using 20 superconducting flux qubits.

The research team will have all required infrastructure for the project. For sample fabrication, we will use state-of-the-art clean room facilities that are provided by the Nanostructure Service Laboratory (NSL) at KIT. The NSL provides equipment for the fabrication and characterization of nanostructures and operates an almost 210 m² clean room of ISO classes 6 and 7. The large pieces of equipment (EBL, FIB, SEM) are operated by skilled scientists and technicians who are also responsible for providing introductory and training courses, for supporting the users, equipment maintenance and NSL management. For a sustained operation a usage fee is charged to the users to cover the project-specific usage costs of clean room (monthly flat charge) and equipment (hourly rate). At NSL we have full access to 50 kV professional Jeol e-beam lithography system, multi-target Plassys evaporation chamber that is ideal for shadow evaporation of qubit Josephson junctions, wet benches, hot plates, reactive ion etching, etc. At Physikalisches Institut of KIT, we have available optical microscopes, bonding machines, resistance probe station to quickly verify the parameters of custom-fabricated samples, in conjunction with test measurements down to 300 mK temperature using two He3 cryostats. The group disposes of 4 dilution refrigerators which are all equipped with GHz-bandwidth signal lines, magnetic shielding and filters necessary for measurements of superconducting circuits operated in the coherent quantum regime at millikelvin temperatures. One of these cryostats (dry BlueFors BF-LD250) will accommodate measurements for this project. This dilution cryostat is already equipped with most of electronics to perform the described microwave domain experiments. Most of the high-frequency devices are readily available, including a vector network analyzer. The Physikalisches Institut of KIT maintains a mechanical workshop capable of modifying the existing and manufacturing new sample holders that we require for this project. The employed low-noise electronics for timed triggering of generators and data acquisition devices are custom-designed by the group together with the electronic workshop of the Physikalisches Institut. The institute’s helium liquefier station ensures the constant availability of the cryogenic liquids required to operate the dilution refrigerators.

Participant 4 – INRIM

Italy’s National Metrology Institute

The Italy’s National Metrology Institute (INRIM) is the national metrology institute of Italy with the task of carrying out and promoting scientific research in metrology, new technologies and materials. INRIM carries out studies and researches on the realisation of primary standards for the basic and derived units of the International System of units (SI), assures the maintenance of such standards, and, in addition, its main R&D areas are in fundamental physical constants, materials, nanotechnology and quantum information. Research on nanoscience and materials is carried out at INRIM from both fundamental and technological perspectives. Nanoscience explores matter behaviour on scales of the same order of atomic and molecular sizes (from 1 to 100 nanometres), where the physical properties are totally different from those on micro- and macroscopic scales, since phenomena are controlled by quantum physics. Aiming to promote new techniques in the area of metrology, sensing and imaging, unique measuring methods are investigated that can go beyond the boundaries of the classical systems using the specific characteristics of the optical quantum states, as, in particular, the correlations linked to the state of entanglement.

Website of the Italy’s National Metrology Institute:

Researches involved in the SUPERGALAX project

Giorgio Brida (Gender Male) is a Senior Researcher at INRiM. He graduated in Electronic Engineering at the Politecnico di Torino in 1991, and he received the Ph.D. degree in Metrology, from the Politecnico di Torino in 1996. Since 1995 he is a staff researcher at IEN Galileo Ferraris (INRiM from 2006) where he started his activity on classical radiometry with cryogenic radiometer for the absolute spectral responsivity calibration of photodetectors. His main field of activity is the design of Silicon photodiodes with predictable spectral responsivity, the characterization of single photon detectors (SPAD, TES, SSPD e CCD) and single photon sources (SPS), parametric down-conversion in non-linear crystals and color center in diamonds. He is responsible for maintaining and disseminating the optical primary standard scale of radiant power and spectral responsivity. His current research interests includes the metrological traceability from classical radiometry to SPS, quantum enhanced measurement techniques and characterization of novel nanophotonic devices. Since 2007 he contributed as Work-Package Leader to the several European Metrology Research Project (EMRP): qu-Candela, Newstar, SIQUTE, MIQC, MIQC2 and PhotoLED.

Alice Meda (Gender Female) is a Research at INRiM. She graduated in Physics at the Università degli Studi di Torino in 2003; she received the Ph.D. degree in Metrology, from the Politecnico di Torino in 2007. Her most recent works regard, on the one side, the realization of protocols in which one of two correlated beams (twin beams or thermal light) is addressed to a target (a beam splitter or a faint object) and the other will be used as an ancilla. She applied the idea to different protocols: Sub Shot Noise quantum imaging, Ghost Imaging and dynamics of Gaussian states. On the other side, her research activity is devoted to the realization of a QKD Italian backbone for the realization of a point-to-point QKD link between Torino and Firenze and to the analysis of side channel attacks in QKD protocols.

Until March 2015, she was the principal investigator of the Torino Research Unit for the Italian three year project “FIRB 2010 -Futuro in Ricerca” Light correlations for high precision innovative sensing (LICHIS) for the design and development of innovative, high precision measurement schemes based on the correlations (classical and entanglement) existing between two or more beams of light. She has provided important contribution to European projects (QuCandela, BRISQ2, SIQUTE, MIQC, MIQC2) for quantum metrology, quantum communication and quantum information technologies.

Emanuele Enrico (Gender Male) is a Researcher at INRiM. He graduated in Physics of Advanced Technologies in 2008 (Università degli Studi di Torino). In 2012 he obtained a Ph.D. in Metrology (Politecnico di Torino). From 2010 to 2016 he has been Technical Assistant for the Research Institutions at the Italian National Institute of Metrological Research (INRiM). In the former institution he has was responsible for the realization of quantum devices based on nanostructured thin film technologies with applications in sensors, quantum metrology and the nano-photonics.

He has been guest researcher at the National Enterprise for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (NEST) of the Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa Italy, where he developed a reference sample device for the generation of quantized electric current. To date he is the author of 56 articles published in international journals. E.E. has been invited speaker at numerous national and international conferences, he is referee for international journals, and has been tutors of many under graduated and PhD students.

Since 2011, E.E. participates in 15 European and national projects as an expert partner in nanofabrication for thin film devices and life science. He has been workpackage leader of the “Fabrication” WP in the EMRP 2012 Microphoton project and “Impact” WP in EMPIR 2017 ParaWave. He has been PI for 3 beamline projects at the ESRF (Grenoble) and for 1 NanoSIMS (Open University, UK) project in the framework of the Europlanet 2020.

Dr. Mauro Rajteri (Gender Male) is an Electronic Engineer (Politecnico di Torino, 1990) with a PhD in Physics (Politecnico di Torino, 1996). From 1999 he is a researcher at INRIM. His main fields of research are superconducting materials and devices in particular as light detectors from UV to IR. He is responsible of the laboratory on “Innovative cryogenic devices”. During his activity, he developed skills on measurement of superconducting materials and devices at cryogenic temperatures. In the last years the research has been focalized on the development of transition-edge sensors (TESs), microcalorimeters with photon-number resolving capability operated in a 3 He/ 4 He dilution refrigerator and in an Adiabatic Demagnetization Refrigerator. He carried out activity on the optical characterization of materials (by spectrophotometry and ellipsometry) and antireflection coatings. He has been involved in research projects for the Italian Space Agency ASI on superconductive photodetectors and in many research project within the EC 7th programme ERANET-plus and EMPR. He has been the coordinator of the Piedmont Region research project E45 “Superconducting transition-edge sensors for single photon counting” (2006-2009), and “Evaluation of photon statistics with photon number resolving detectors and correlated photon pair sources” Joint Projects for the exchange of researchers within the Executive Programme Italy-Japan 2009-2012). He has been responsible of the workpackage “Optimised novel materials for high performance NEMS”, for the European project EMRP-NEW08 “Metrology with/for NEMS (MetNEMS)” (2012-2015).

He is the author of more than 70 papers on international peer reviewed journals, he is referee for international journals,

and has been tutors of many under graduated and PhD students.

Description of significant infrastructure and major items of technical equipment of the INRIM, relevant to theSUPERGALAX project

The research team has a long time experience in fabrication of thin film devices based on NV color centers, Coulombic devices, Josephson junctions and superconducting nanonwires. The research team has all necessary technological equipment for a full cycle device fabrication starting from photo mask realization up to final assembling of chips on chip carrier:

Clean room facilities;

Variable-pressure Electron Beam Lithography in a modified SEM-FIB – FEI Quanta3D FEG (beam up to 30 kV)

Laser writer system for laser beam photolithography Heidlberg uPG-101;

Chemical hoods and storages for resist preparation and development (spinner, hot-plate)

Chemical hood for lift-off processes (ultrasonic bath)

Multi-pocket (6x,4cc) high vacuum electron beam evaporator for high quality ultra-thin film (4->250 nm) deposition (normal metals and superconductors). Load-lock equipped with ion milling system (Ar, O2 – Telemark XIAD 1kV) for substrate cleaning and controlled gas inlet for tunnel junctions’ realization. Tiltable sample holder.

Ultra high vacuum dc-magnetron multi target (Nb, Al) deposition system equipped with load-look chamber.

Vacuum deposition system for thermal evaporation of metallic (Cr, Au) thin films;

Plasma Enhanced Chemical Vapour Deposition (PECVD) for the growth of SiO2 dielectric films

Reactive Ion Etching with Ar, CF4, O2 gases

Plasma Matrix (bDiscom) cleaner, N2, Ar and O2 gases for resist descum and substrate cleaning

Wedge bonder, Al wire. Bump bonding and ball bonding (Au) capabilities.

Wafer dicing: diamond scriber

Alpha Step Profilometer for thickness step-height evaluation

Ellipsometer for dielectric thickness evaluation

Optical microscope

The group has an experience in experiments at ultra-low temperatures. The group is equipped by

adiabatic Demagnetization Refrigerator and Leiden Cryogenics MCK 50-100 dilution refrigerator (20 mK)

The group has the following microwave equipment:

Agilent E4440A Spectrum Analyzer (3 Hz to 26.5 GHz);

Agilent E8257D Signal generator (250 kHz to 67 GHz);

Agilent E8244A Signal generator (250 kHz – 40 GHz);

Anritsu MG3694B Signal generator 40 GHz

VNA Agilent E8364C 10 MHz – 110 GHz (in coaxial up to 50 GHz)

Participant 2 – RUB

Ruhr-University Bochum

The Ruhr-University Bochum (RUB) is one of the largest public universities in Germany. The RUB is the university renowned on the international scale by the fundamental research in material science and quantum physics, as well as multidisciplinary applied research in modern quantum electronics. The RUB group of the project is a part of Institut für Theoretische Physics III (TP III) of the RUB. The researchers of TP III have obtained over the last decades a large number of fundamental scientific results in the field of superconductivity, quantum many body theory, quantum physics of low-dimensional systems, e.g. graphene, topological insulators.

Website of the Ruhr-University Bochum:

Researchers involved in the SUPERGALAX project

The RUB partner group (Prof. Ilya Eremin (PI) and Dr. Mikhail Fistul) has a long established expertise in a theoretical study of coherent quantum phenomena in various metallic, magnetic, semiconducting and superconducting nanostructures under equilibrium or non-equilibrium conditions. Last several years the RUB group has also concentrated on the number of projects related to the analysis of the proximity effects in heterostructures containing magnets and superconductors, analyzed the properties of unconventional superconductors, studied unconventional methods of quantum computing, i.e. Majorana fermions or skyrmions.

Prof. Dr. Ilya M. Eremin (Gender male), was born in 1974 in Kazan, Russia. In 1996 he was graduated in Physics from the Kazan University, Russia. After obtaining his Ph.D. in Russian Federation at one of the leading universities Kazan Federal (State) University in 1999 in the area of Theoretical and Mathematical Physics, he moved to Germany first as Alexander von Humboldt fellow with Karl Bennemann from the Free University of Berlin and later as a long-term post-doctoral research associate (Wi.Mi.) in the group of Felix von Oppen. In February 2005 he joined the Max-Planck Institute for Physics of Complex Systems in Dresden (joint offer with TU Braunschweig) as a junior-professor. In April 2010 he was appointed as a W2 Professor (tenured Associate Professor) in Theoretical Physics (Condensed Matter theory) at the Ruhr-Universität Bochum. In January 2020 he was promoted to the full (chair) professorship in Condensed Matter Theory at the Ruhr-Universität Bochum.

The main scientific interests lie in the field of quantum many-body effects in application to solid state systems both analytically and numerically. To be more precise he is interested in the theoretical investigation of collective effects in novel materials like strongly correlated low-dimensional electronic, topologically non-trivial and magnetic systems. It includes unconventional superconductivity phenomena, exotic collective excitations in geometrically frustrated systems and their topological properties, and application of these effects for novel spintronics quantum computing devices as well as the effects out of equilibrium. In his research, he is using modern methods of theoretical physics, ranging from numerically based modeling including the electronic corrections, and density matrix approaches for non-equilibrium systems as well as more analytical quantum field theory methods for effective theories including the renormalization group and exactly solvable models.

Overall, he published more than 150 research papers in the refereed journals such as Physical Review B, Physical Review Letters, Nature, Nature Communications, Nature Physics, New Journal of Physics, Europhysics Letters and so on. He has established the research group at Ruhr-University in Bochum. Presently he is supervising several Ph.D. students (Dipl.-Phys. Jakob Böker, started Autumn 2016, Dipl.-Phys. Dustin Altenfeld, started in 2014, Dipl. Phys. Fabian Lambert, started in 2015, Dipl.-Phys. Marvin Müller, started in 2017, Samme Dahir, started in 2018), and several Bachelor and Master students. His current h-index is 39 (Google Scholar), 31 (WoS).

Dr. Mikhail V. Fistul (Gender male), was born in 1959 in Moscow, Russia. In 1981 he was graduated from the Department of Theoretical Physics of Moscow Steel and Alloys Institute (MISiS). In 1984 Dr. Mikhail Fistul has received his Ph.D. in Physical and Mathematical Sciences from the MISIS, Russia. His scientific adviser was prominent Russian physicist Prof. Lev Aslamazov. In 1984-1991 Mikhail Fistul kept various research positions (Junior Researcher, Senior Researcher) at MISIS. From 1991-1997 he worked as the Research Associate at Purdue University, IN USA. In 1998-2000 he worked at the University Erlangen- Nürnberg as the recipient of the Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellowship. Up to now Dr. Mikhail Fistul kept various research/teaching positions: 2000-2002-Research Associate, Max-Planck Institute for Physics of Complex Systems, Dresden; 2002-2004- Visiting Professor, University Erlangen-Nürnberg, Erlangen Germany; 2004-2016- Researcher, Ruhr University Bochum, Bochum (Germany), 2017- Research Fellow, Center for Theoretical Physics of Complex Systems, Institute for Basic Science (IBS), Daejeon, Republic of Korea.

In January 2019 Mikhail Fistul was appointed as a Professor in NanoScience at the University of Science and Technology, Daejeon, Republic of Korea. Mikhail Fistul has published more than 110 papers in leading scientific journals, i.e. Nature (2), Nature Communications (3), ASC Nano (1), Physical Review Letters (9), etc., his h-index is 26 (Google Scholar), 23 (WoS). He has given more than 80 talks on various international conferences, workshops and seminars. Mikhail Fistul was a scientific organizer of an international workshop “Quantum effects in systems of nanocrystals (QEAN)” at the Lorenz Center, Netherlands. He serves for many years as a referee for top physical journals, i.e. Physical Review Letters, Physical Review B(E), Journal of Physics, etc.

During his scientific carrier Dr. Mikhail Fistul taught the advanced courses at University Erlangen-Nuernberg (Erlangen,Germany), NUST MISiS (Moscow, Russia), IBS PCS Daejeon (South Korea), namely, Physics of Superconductors, Quantum phenomena in mesoscopic solid-state systems, Introduction in solid state quantum computing, Spintronics, Physical principles of quantum information and macroscopic quantum phenomena, Superconducting circuits and qubits. These courses were intended for graduate students specialized in solid-state physics, quantum information. Dr. Mikhail Fistul has been a co-adviser of Ph. D. students at various universities, e.g. Dr. Alex Tartakovskii, (1990, NUST MISiS ) and Dr. N. Maleeva (2015, NUST MISiS), Dr. M. Iontsev (2020, NUST MISiS), Dr. Samir Rajan, (1996, Purdue University USA), Dr. A. Miroshnichenko (2001, MPI PCS Dresden Germany), Dr. A. Kemp and Dr. M. Shuster (2004, University Erlangen-Nuernberg, Erlangen Germany), Dr. S. Syzranov (2009, RUB, Bochum Germany) and Dipl.-Phys. P. Volkov (2014, RUB , Bochum Germany).

For his research on the classical nonlinear and macroscopic quantum properties of disordered interacting Josephson junctions Dr. Mikhail Fistul was awarded the First National Award for Young Researchers (Russia-1986), Humboldt Research Fellowship (Germany, 1998 and 2002), Professorship through the “INNOVATEC” program in the field of nanoscience (Germany, 2002) and the Merkator Professorship (Germany, 2004). He was a principal investigator of an international research project “Quantum synchronization in systems of interacting Josephson junctions” (Ministry of Education and Science, Russia 2013-2014). In 2016 he was a Visiting Professor, Project: “Collective quantum coherent phenomena in superconducting quantum metamaterials” (International Institute of Physics, Natal Brazil, 04-06.2016) and Dr. Mikhail Fistul participated in international collaborative projects “Collective phenomena in quantum matter” (NUST MISiS, Russia 2014-2018), “Quantum metamaterials composed of superconducting qubits” (Russian Quantum Center (RQC), 2016-2018).

The main scientific interests of Dr. Mikhail Fistul are: modelling and theoretical analysis of macroscopic coherent collective quantum effects in systems of interacting superconducting qubits in the presence of externally applied microwave radiation.

Areas of expertise of Dr. Mikhail Fistul are: the theoretical solid state physics, superconductivity, Josephson junctions, and especially, the coherent quantum phenomena in the transport of various (metallic, semiconducting, ferromagnetic and superconducting) artificially prepared nanostructures.

Description of significant infrastructure and major items of technical equipment, relevant to theSUPERGALAX project

To implement the theoretical part of the proposal in the field of detecting of low power EWs with the network of interacting qubits (10-12 qubits) in the presence of disorder and dissipation, the RUB science partner will use the computer clusters already established at the TP III RUB: several clusters of Titan X550 – Dual CPUs Intel Broadwell-EP Xeon E5-2600 V4 Series Quad Tesla GPU Computing Server up to 44 Cores.

Participant 1 – CNR

National Research Council of Italy

The National Research Council (CNR) is the largest public research institution in Italy, the only one under the Research Ministry performing multidisciplinary activities. Its structure include 7 scientific Departments among which the Department of Physical science and material technologies coordinates the physical-material area. The objectives of the Department include both the development of scientific thematic at the edge of knowledge and technological applications with significant economical outcomes. In the quantum science and technology field, the realization of devices for quantum sensing and information processing, with unmatchable characteristics, if compared to the classical systems has pivotal role.

Website of the National Research Council of Italy:

CNR group of the SUPARGALAX project takes part of the Institute for superconductors, oxides and other innovative materials and devices (SPIN-CNR) and the Institute of Nanoscience of the CNR (CNR-NANO). One of the main activities of the SPIN is micro/nano superconducting electronic devices (for quantum computation and other applications). The research activities of the CNR-NANO are centered on implementation of nanostructures and nanodevices.

Website of the SPIN-CNR

Websites of the CNR-NANO:

Researches from the SPIN-CNR involved in the SUPERGALAX project

Dr. Mikhail Lisitskiy –Project Coordinator-(Gender male), Italian Citizenship, was born in 1963 in Moscow, Russia, In 1986 he has graduated cum laude in Physics of Metals at the Moscow Steel and Alloys Institute, Russia, and his Diploma has been declared equivalent to Italian Diploma in Physics. In 1991 Dr. Mikhail Lisitskiy has received his Ph.D. in Physical and Mathematical Sciences from the Moscow Steel and Alloys Institute, Russia, which has been declared equivalent to Italian Doctor of Science. Academician, Prof. Alexey Abrikosov was a scientific supervisor of his Ph.D. activity. Dr. Mikhail Lisitskiy is involved in the scientific activity since 1986, when his three years Ph. D. course begun, until now. After Ph. D. course, since 1989 he has continued his scientific activity at the Institute of Radio Engineering and Electronics of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR (from 1991 – the Russian Academy of Sciences) of Moscow, Division of Physical Electronics, firstly as a permanent Researcher and from 1995 as a Senoir Researcher. Since 1997 till 2002 he has worked in Italy under different research grants and contracts of the National Institute for the Physics of Matter (INFM) and the Italian Institute of Nuclear Physics (INFN). In 2002 he has become a Contract Researcher of the National Research Council (CNR) at the Institute of Cybernetics “Eduardo Caianiello” of the CNR. Since 2008, January 1, as a winner of the Italian public competition, he has received a permanent position of the National Research Council at the Institute of Cybernetics “Eduardo caianiello” of the CNR with qualification of Researcher. From January of 2014 till now Dr. Mikhail Lisitskiy is a Researcher of the Institute of Superconductors, Oxides and Other Innovative Materials and Devices (acronym SPIN) of the National Research Council of Italy. Dr. Mikhail Lisitskiy was a Scientific Supervisor of several graduate students and PhD students. Dr. Mikhail Lisitskiy has published over 79 papers in peer reviewed journals and has an h-index of 13 (Google Scholar).

The main scientific interests of Dr. Mikhail Lisitskiy are: Superconductivity, especially, weak superconductivity; physics of Josephson devices, such as radiation detectors, SQUID sensors and qubit; physics and technological aspects of the planar hybrid tunable THz metamaterial structures based on liquid crystal as tuning mechanism.

Actual scientific interests of Dr. Mikhail Lisitskiy are: single X- and gamma –ray photon detector based on Josephson tunnel junction with trapped Abrikosov vortices; quantum coherence in Josephson devices including physics, material research and novel fabrication technologies for high coherence time superconducting qubits;

Areas of expertise of Dr. Mikhail Lisitskiy are: physics of detection mechanisms of nuclear (X – and gamma – rays, alpha particles) radiation based on Josephson tunnel junctions; fabrication techniques based on Al, Pb, Ta, Nb, and NbN as superconducting materials and AlOx, AlN and a-Si:H as insulation materials for realization of thin film superconducting devices including radiation detectors, SQUIDs, nano-SQUIDs, microwave lumped resonators and Josephson phase qubits; ultralow temperature charge –pulse measurements by 3He/4He-dilution refrigerator (up to 70 mK) of energy spectrum of X-ray and alpha-particle radiations by superconducting tunnel junction detectors; low temperature measurements (up to 4.2 K) of the transmissivity |S21| parameter of superconducting lumped LC resonators up to 40 GHz and experimental estimation of dielectric loss of insulation materials embedded in the resonators; ultralow temperature measurements by 3He/4He-dilution refrigerator (up to 20 mK) of Rabi oscillations and qubit spectroscopy of superconducting Josephson phase qubits.

Dr. Mikkel Ejrnaes (Gender male) was born the 1st November 1973 in AArhus (Denmark) and is now a permanent researcher at the National Research Counci (CNR) of Italy since 2009. From 2014 till now Dr. Mikkel Elrnaes is a Researcher of the Institute of Superconductors, Oxides and Other Innovative Materials and Devices (acronym SPIN) of the National Research Council. Dr. Mikkel Ejrnaes has co-authered 60 scientific publications and has an h-index of 12.

The scientific work Mikkel Ejrnaes has been focused on non-equilibrium phenomenon in superconducting nanostructures along with their physical properties and interaction with light, covering all aspects in this context e.g.:

-The role of the superconducting material from conventional strong-coupling to superconductor-ferromagnetic multilayers and high-temperature superconductors.

-The role of the connectivity of the superconductor on the nanoscale ranging from a simply connected region to advanced geometries exploiting parallel nanowires e.g. non-simply connected superconductors.

-Non-equilibrium phenomenon ranging from picosecond spontaneous fluctuations to the nanosecond dynamics of a moving normal-metal/superconductor phase boundary.

-Light – Superconductor interaction ranging from single photon detection with unconventional detectors design on the nanoscale to timing precision of the detection mechanism.

The areas of expertise of Mikkel Ejrnaes most relevant to this project are:

-Fabrication of nanoscale superconducting structures on a wide range of materials.

-Interaction of superconducting nanostructures with light.

-Extremely low noise cryogenic measurements.

-Advanced superconductor design, measurement techniques and data analysis for capturing and harvesting specific interesting physical effects.

-Experimental work with superconducting qubit structures.

Dr.Nassim Chikhi (Gender male) was born in Algiers, Algeria, in 1980. He received Engineer degree in electronics specialized in electronic instrumentation from University of science and technology Houari Boumediene (USTHB) Algiers, Algeria, in 2003. MSc of micro and nano technology from Liverpool University, UK, in 2008, and PhD in Novel Technologies for Materials, Sensors and Imaging from University of Naples “Federico II,” Naples, Italy in 2012.

From 2004 to 2009, research assistant at Centre for Development of Advanced Technologies (CDTA) Algiers, Algeria. Working on neuronal network implementation on FPGA for ECG signal classification. Since 2009 focussed on Design, fabrication, and characterization of tunable & reconfigurable metamaterial based structures. From 2018, has a PostDoc position at the physics department of Naples University in collaboration with the CERN with main interest for the metamaterial as absorbers for trapped modes inside the collimators. From 2020 is a PostDoc of the SPIN-CNR in the SUERGALAX project.

Researches from the CNR-NANO involved in the SUPERGALAX project

Marco Affronte (gender male) is Full Professor of Physics at University of Modena e Reggio Emilia (I) and senior associate member of CNR-NANO since 2006. After graduating in Physics (Laurea with full marks and honours at University of Florence I, 1987), he obtained his Ph.D. at Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (CH) in 1991 and worked at CNRS in Grenoble (F) in 1992 as Post Doc awarded by European Marie Curie individual fellowship. Since 2014. M.A. was Director of the PhD School in Physics and NanoScience at UNIMORE (2014-19). His background is on Solid State Physics and he worked on superconductivity, electronic transport and thermodynamic properties of materials, molecular magnetism. His interests are now focused on Nanomagnetism and Quantum Technologies in particular spintronics, graphene and on development of nano-devices and superconducting detectors working in quantum regime. M. A: was coordinator of 2 EU FET projects and member of the Steering Committee of several national and European projects. He serve(s/d) as project reviewer several National, EU and international agencies and member of evaluation panel for some of these (Eu-FET-ICT, French-ANR, Academy of Finland). Publications: more than 200 scientific articles, with more than 5800 citations, >50 invited/oral presentations at international conferences in last 10years and also to general public. (h-index=41WoS; ORCID ID: 0000-0001-5711-7822)

Alberto Ghirri (male, born in 1980, ORCID 0000-0001-7316-3765) is a permanent researcher at Istituto Nanoscienze – CNR in Modena, Italy. He has a background in experimental physics with more than 50 publications in international journals and h-index = 20. His studies are related to the fields of quantum magnetism,microwavesand hybrid quantum systems. In particular, he recently focused on the investigation of the coherent coupling between solid-states quantum systems, such as spin ensembles and semiconductor quantum dots, and microwave fields confined in a superconducting cavity.

Claudio Bonizzoni (male) obtained the PhD on Physics and Nanosciences (cum Laude) in 2018 at the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia.He was Post-Doctoral research fellow at the Department of Physics, Informatics and Mathematics in Modena in 2018 and 2019. He’s currently

Post-Doctoral research fellow at Istituto Nanoscienze CNR in Modena. His main activity concerns spin qubits and spectroscopic techniques at microwave frequency and low temperature.8 publications.

Description of significant infrastructure and major items of technical equipment, relevant to theSUPERGALAX project

The research team has a long time experience in fabrication of thin film devices based on Josephson junctions and superconducting nanonwires. The research team has all necessary technological equipment for a full cycle device fabrication starting from photo mask realization up to final assembling of chips on chip carrier, namely:

Clean room facilities;

Laser writer system for laser beam photolithography Microtech LASERWRITER LW-2004;

Upgraded SEM FEI Quanta 600 adapted to electron beam with energy of 30 keV in modality of EBL (Electron Beam Lithography );

Laboratory of UV photolithography equipped by Karl Suss mask aligner, Standard Cost Effective Equipment Hotplate 1100;

High vacuum dc-magnetron multi target (Nb, Al, Si) deposition system equipped with a cryopump and with an additional load-look chamber. Both the RF source and the extractor ion source IQE 11/35 (SPECS Company, Germany) are mounted into the load-look chamber;

Vacuum deposition system Leybold for thermal evaporation both metallic (Pb, Au, Al) and insulation (SiO) thin films;

JUPITER II plasma system for reactive ion etching of thin films;

Wedge bonder;

Alpha Step Profilometer;

Partners and researchers

No Name Short name Country Grant amount, Euro
1 National Research Council CNR Italy 424 348.75
2 Ruhr-University, Bochum RUB Germany 337 500.00
3 Loughborough University LU United Kingdom 386 463.75
4 Italy’s National Metrology Institute INRIM Italy 370 000.00
5 Karlsruhe Institute of Technology KIT Germany 348 170.00
6 Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology IPHT Germany 363 500.00
7 National Institute for Nuclear Physics INFN Italy 226 250.00

Total consortium

2 456 232.50

Please click on the partner name in order to access to the institution description and CVs of the researchers involved in the project.

Project information

Project Coordinator Dr. Mikhail Lisitskiy (National Research Council of Italy (CNR), Institute for Superconductors, Oxides and Other Innovative Materials and Devices (SPIN- CNR), Italy
Starting date 01/01/2020
Duration in months 36
Call (part) identifier H2020-FETOPEN-2018-2019-2020-01
FET-Open Challenging Current Thinking
Fixed EC KeywordsDark matter, dark energy, Photonics, Superconductivity, Metrology and measurement
Free keywordsSuperconducting qubits, driven superconducting qubits networks, collective AC Stark effect, single microwave photon detector, dark matter axions


The ambition of the project is to develop and realize conceptually novel and practical quantum limited SQN detector capable to reveal single MW photons for a photon frequency of ~10 GHz with the Heisenberg limit of sensitivity and the quantum limit noise with a view to apply it to the QUAX (QUaerere AXion) experiment, an INFN funded search for galactic axions by means of both ferromagnetic and normal “haloscopes” [1][2].

The specific objectives of our project are as follows:

  1. Development of a single microwave photon detector based on moderate size networks of interacting superconducting qubits utilizing both transmons and flux qubits.
  2. Development of the Parametric Down Conversion (PDC) microwave photon source based on the Traveling Wave Josephson Parametric Amplifier (TW-JPA) with a clock frequency of few kHz
  3. Integration of the PDC MW photon source with two single photon SQN detectors in a common setup to develop an heralded single photon source and to carry out the test of the detectors at single MW photons.
  4. Installation of the single photon SQN detector integrated with the single photon source as a calibration element in a He free refrigerator of the QUAX Collaboration.
  5. Experimental study of feasibility of the single microwave photon SQN detector for the “haloscope” type of axion searching using the axion conversion in a magnetic field.

[1] Barbieri et al., Phys. Dark Univ. 15, 135 (2017).

[2] N. Crescini et al., Eur. Phys. J. C 78, 703 (2018).