Success Story 2015

Menno Poot won the Micrograph Award 2015 and tells us about his journey from the decision to participate in the Micrograph Award to the participation of the CLEO attendance in sunny California:

“Last year I participated in Raith’s micrograph award with a SEM image of one of the devices that I made in the Yale University cleanroom with an EBPG5000 Plus. It is a photonic circuit for doing quantum optics with single photons on a chip. This complex device contains many state-of-the-art elements such as optomechanical phase shifters and superconducting single-photon detectors.

After the final fabrication step, I inspected the chip and was happy to see that everything on it looked great. At this point I decided to take a few more images that would be useful for papers and presentations. Before, one of my colleagues had participated in Raith’s micrograph award, and so I submitted my best picture.

SEM image of a photonic CNOT quantum gate
The winner picture 2015: a photonic CNOT quantum gate.

I was delighted to hear that my picture was awarded the first prize: a fully sponsored trip to a conference of my choosing. After looking at different options, I decided that the CLEO conference in San José, California was perfect. It is one of the best conferences in the field of integrated optics and, not unimportantly, also at a great location. The hotel, conference and flights were all booked for me; I stayed in the Marriott which was very conveniently located next to the convention center.

Right when the conference started on Monday morning, I gave my talk on the integrated quantum optics chips. There were quite lot of people and in 12 minutes I showed the main results of my most recent results on fabricating and measuring these intriguing devices, and I had a lot of interesting questions afterwards.

The other days, I attended a lot of talks, of course many in my own field, but CLEO is also a great opportunity to broaden your scope and learn a lot of new things. The conference ended Friday afternoon but I asked to have my return flight booked for a week later. This meant that, besides the great conference, I could also enjoy some of the beauty of California (on my own expenses). I rented a car for the second week and on my road trip, I visited a number of beautiful national parks, such as Lassen, Yosemite, and King’s Canyon.

I had a really great time, and all of this thanks to this one picture that I took on a rainy afternoon in New Haven.”

Your success story

Do you want to take a trip to a conference of your choosing? Then send us your impressive results and participate in the Micrograph Award to not miss your chance of winning.