Research Projects for B.Sc Students

We encourage students to gain experience in scientific research already during their B.Sc. 

Bellow is a list of the faculty members, sorted according to their field, who are currently offering research projects along with a short description of their research subjects.

(can be taken for credit points according to the guidelines for "77635 - Research Project")

Astrophysics and Relativity Projects

Prof. Avishai Dekel

Research projects in cosmology on the formation of galaxies and large-scale structure in the universe, theory with a varying level of numerical analysis including the usage of cosmological simulations and potentially machine learning.

Prof. Reem Sari

We study planet formation, evolution and interior structure by developing analytical and numerical models.
In the last two decades space missions and ground based observations discovered thousands of extra-solar planets in our galaxy, marking the beginning of a long journey in search of life outside the solar system.
Planets seem to be ubiquitous in nature, and appear in many forms, some of which are new to us without an analog in the solar system.  
In our research we explain the observed planet properties and answer fundamental questions about planetary systems, such as:

  • How planets form?
  • What determines the type of a planet?
  • What planets are composed of? 
  • How interior structure evolves in time?

A suitable project could be tailored for any talented undergraduate around these activities.

Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics projects

Prof. Yaron Bromberg

Join us at the complex photonic lab for an experimental undergraduate research project, and be part of our effort to understand these questions and many more. During the project,  you will learn how to design, build and operate complex optical systems. You will acquire the basic scientific skills required for performing independent scientific research, and most importantly, you’ll discover the joy of working on cutting-edge research using state-of-the-art technology. Some questions we are dealing with are:

  1. How can we tailor the shape of single photons? 
  2. Can we utilize the shape of entangled photons to encrypt information? 
  3. What are the quantum limits on the resolution of imaging systems? 
  4. How can we deliver more information over optical fibers?

Prof. Nadav Katz

The group topics are Quantum optics, quantum information, quantum sensing and condensed matter. 
Background: The use of electrical circuits for engineered Hamiltonians is relatively new to experimental physics. Modern capabilities are derived from advanced nano technologies along with a deeper understanding of superconductivity and quantum electronics. These new circuits exhibit beautiful physics both spatially and spectrally, and are intuitive and accessible.
Available projects:

  1. Microwave meta-materials: design and fabrication of topological States in engineered capacitive and inductive arrays.
  2. Design and characterization of superconducting circuits for quantum computing.

Prof. Ronen Rapaport

Our research focuses on the following problems and challenges, where we have experimental and theory projects for undergraduate students: 

  1. Harvesting quantum light: how light and nano-matter interact on the quantum level, and can we use it for making ultrafast single photon sources and nano-optical devices for quantum information? 
  2. Light-induced ultra-cold quantum condensates on a chip: how can we turn light (photons) into artificial quantum matter (Bose-Einstein condensates) inside semiconductor nano-structures? 
  3. Mixing light and matter for future quantum opto-electronics: how to make new quasi-particles which are half-light half-mater? 
  4. Applied optics: developing new concepts in optical-probes of material properties with high resolution for industrial and scientific applications  

Our state-of-the-art experimental tools include ultrafast optical imaging and spectroscopy, quantum optical measurement techniques, nano-fabrication, and low temperature optics, and whiskey. 

Theoretical tools include quantum many-body models, numerical tools for light-matter coupling in nano-structures, advanced simulations of system dynamics, and lots of black coffee

Prof. Alex Retzker

 

We study the foundations of quantum mechanics and of future quantum technologies. In particular, we study and propose theoretical methods to probe, extend and control coherence.  Exploiting coherence, we investigate its prospects for technological use, mainly for quantum computing and precise measurements.
Our work includes theoretical proposals for the implementation of quantum technologies and the investigation of quantum mechanics via various platforms, concentrating on NV centers in diamond and trapped ions.  We extensively collaborate with experimental groups from various fields on the realization of quantum technology goals.

Condensed Matter Physics projects

Prof. Oded Millo

We combine various scanning local-probe methods, Scanning Tunneling Microscopy/Spectroscopy and Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) related spectroscopic applications with global transport and photo-transport measurements and theoretical simulations in studies of nanostructured and hybrid superconductor and semiconductor systems. Presently we focus on:  

  1. Unconventional superconductivity: Emergence of and control over triplet-pairing superconductivity in superconductor/ferromagnetic and superconductor/chiral-molecules hybrid systems. We also study proximity effects at superconductor/graphene interfaces, finding evidence for (unconventional) p-wave order-parameter.
  2. Cu(In,Ga)Se2 and perovskites solar-cell materials: Here we aim at understanding the origin of the high conversion efficiency of solar-cells comrising these materials. Our studies are at the basic science level (we do not fabricate the cells), focusing on the complex photo-conduction processes in these materials.
  3. Electrical properties of individual colloidal semiconductor nanocrystals: Using STS we measure the electronic level structure and map the wavefunctions of the quantum-confined states of various NC systems - spherical quantum-dots, nanorods and nanoplateltets.

Prof. Zohar Ringel

  1. Wide and deep artificial neural networks and statistical mechanics. Deep neural networks are advancing the field of artificial intelligence at an exceedingly fast pace. Nonetheless, a theoretical understanding of how they learn is still largely lacking. Some of the outstanding questions are why they learn so well despite being overparameterized and how transportable/general are the internal representations they learn of the problem. Recently it became apparent that some of these questions may become tractable for the case of very wide deep neural networks. In this project, we shall explore this tractable limit using analytical and numerical tools.
  2. Topological insulators in one-dimension and their boundary modes. While all insulators insulate in their bulk, not all insulators are the same. In fact, there are various topologically distinct insulators who differ qualitatively by the type of physical phenomena one measures on their spatial boundary. This subfield of topological phases of matter has been a major driving force in condensed matter physics. In this project, we shall analytically explore what makes a particular one-dimensional topological insulator, topologically distinct, and how we can understand the correspondence between its topological bulk and the physical phenomena occurring on its boundary (the bulk-edge correspondence).
  3. Applications of the information bottleneck approach to statistical mechanics. There are various intriguing relations between physics and information. For instance, entropy can be seen as quantifying the information you learn by measuring the state of the system. Also many aspects of statistical mechanics, for instance the Boltzmann distribution, arise naturally when viewing statistical mechanics as an inference problem. A relatively recent development in the information theory, is the information bottleneck idea which tells us how to encode a random variable in a way which best preserves the relevant information on another random variable. In this project we shall explore relations between the information bottleneck and physical concepts such as the renormalization group technique.

Prof. Amir Saar

Our group investigates the physics at the nanoscales of semiconductor nanostructures and developing optical and electronic devices, based on the principles of Nanoscience & Nanotechnology. Specific projects include:

  1. Silicon based nanostructures (quantum dots, quantum wires, porous silicon). Investigating quantum size effects that allow control (and design) of the optical properties of these media, particularly coherent light emission and light amplification; developing light emitting diodes (LEDs) and lasers, based on porous silicon.
  2. Developing 3D (three-dimensional) laser-based printers for direct printing of semiconductors (and metals) such as silicon and perovskites, on small scales (meso- and nano- length scales) and on virtually any substrate (such as papers, plastics and glasses). Utilization of these principles and devices to application areas such as "printed electronics", RFID and printed photovoltaic solar cells.
  3. Developing bio-photonic sensors, based on photonic-crystals, which allow selective capturing of bacteria and cells, followed by transduction of the biological interaction into measurable optical signal. This is an applied project that can be exploited for applications in the Food-tech industry and in biomedical systems.

More details about these projects can be found in: https://saaramir.wixsite.com/huji

High Energy Physics projects

Prof. Barak Kol

  1. Symmetries of Feynman Integrals. Feynman diagrams are the computational core of the theory of fundamental interactions, yet despite considerable work over 70 years a general theory for their evaluation is lacking. In recent years we have developed a novel formulation which uncovers an underlying geometry and may lead to such a theory, see https://arxiv.org/abs/1507.01359. The project will consist of studying the method, including the associated concepts of Feynman diagrams and Lie groups, and the application of the method to increasingly richer diagrams to further refine the formulation and better assess its capabilities.
  2. Einstein’s gravity in the LIGO era. A possible project would be to simulate the motion of a stellar black hole around a supermassive black hole (namely, an extreme mass ratio) including the influence of the self force. The project will include the study of the basics of Einstein’s gravity, determination of trajectories (geodesics) and the development of a new numerical method to determine the self-force based on https://arxiv.org/abs/1307.4064.

Prof. Eric Kuflik and Prof. Yonit Hochberg

Research in high energy phenomenology at the Racah Institute aims to address fundamental questions left unanswered by the Standard Model of particle physics: What are the dark matter particles of the Universe? Why does our world consist almost entirely of matter and not of antimatter? Why is the mass of the weak force carriers so much smaller than the scale of gravity? These are several of many indications that there must be new physics beyond the Standard Model. The Large Hadron Collider (LHC), operating at record-breaking energies, together with a host of astroparticle observatories, will teach us much in this regard. Our research focuses on the phenomenology of such new particles and interactions, with particular emphasis on novel theoretical ideas and experimental signals at the LHC and other experiments. We study new ideas for the exploration of dark matter, proposing new theories of its particle identity, as well as novel experimental avenues to detect it on earth. Furthermore, we are extensively interested in non-standard theories of new physics and in the identification of exotic experimental signatures that have been overlooked, towards the goal of identifying the fundamental constituents of Nature.

Nuclear and Hadronic Physics projects

Prof. Amiram Leviatan

  1. Simple patterns in complex nuclei: role of emergent and partial symmetries.
  2. Quantum phase transitions in nuclei: spectrum generating algebras.

Prof. Michael Paul

Experiments in nuclear astrophysics (s- and r-process).
Nuclear astrophysics, which is the microscopic component of astrophysics, investigates the nuclear reactions responsible for the formation of the elements of nature. We build detection equipment, perform and analyze accelerator and nuclear reactor experiments to study in particular astrophysical neutron-induced reactions.

Prof. Betzalel Bazak

  1. Application of deep machine learning techniques to solve quantum few-body systems.
  2. Study the short-range correlations in atomic and nuclear systems.
  3. Exploring universal physics in quantum few-body systems.