This is a graduate course on quantum optics. We will examine the physics of the quantum electromagnetic field, and its interactions with other quantum mechanical objects (resonators, circuits, atoms).

Instructor email: amar.vutha@utoronto


#5: A Python program to solve the optical Bloch equations:

#4: Makeup problems are now available. Only do as many as you need to make up for missed assignments or the exam. Submit your solutions before Apr 10.

#3: Term papers are due at 11 am on Apr 18.

#2: Here is a simple Python program for plotting Q-functions on a sphere:

#1: The first lecture will be on January 5th.


Lectures: MP 408. Tuesday & Thursday, 9.30-11 am.

Office hours: (by appointment) MP 1101. Tuesday, 2 pm.

Lecture notes: shared notes for topics not covered in the textbooks.


A strong graduate level background in classical electromagnetism and quantum mechanics will be assumed. Recommended prerequisites are:
  • PHY 1485 (Laser Physics)
  • PHY 1510 (Electromagnetism)
  • PHY 1520 (Quantum Mechanics)
  • PHY 2203 (Quantum Optics I)
Contact the instructor if you are concerned about your background.


CC Gerry and PL Knight, Introductory Quantum Optics, Cambridge (2004).

You are also welcome to use Dan Steck's quantum optics notes.

We will occasionally refer to:
S Haroche, J-M Raimond, Exploring the Quantum: Atoms, Cavities, and Photons, Oxford (2013).


  • Homework assignments (30%)
    • Due in class, 1 week after the assignment is posted. Please type up your solutions, or write them very clearly.
  • In-class exam (30%)
  • Term paper (40%)
    • The term paper must be in two-column journal article format. Maximum length 6 pages.
    • Topics for the term paper should be picked, and announced to me, by Week 6.
    • I am looking for insight in your term papers. Aim to provide a useful synthesis of existing knowledge, or a new way of understanding a topic, or an interesting analysis of open problems/challenges in a field.