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Jonathan Silver

Jonathan Silver

Senior scientist

Jonathan Silver is the leader of the Microcombs team and a Senior Scientist within the Atomic Clocks and Sensors group. He joined NPL as a Higher Research Scientist in 2015 after completing a PhD in ultracold atoms and single trapped ions at the University of Cambridge, two years of which were spent at the University of Bonn in Germany. From 2018 to 2020 he held a Royal Academy of Engineering UK Intelligence Community Postdoctoral Research Fellowship hosted by City, University of London, during which time he was a Visiting Researcher at NPL.

Jonathan’s specialist area of research is microresonator-based frequency combs, or microcombs for short. His team is currently developing compact microcombs for optical clocks and radar as part of the UK National Quantum Technologies Programme. This involves collaborating with the Universities of Glasgow and Southampton on the development of chip-based ultrahigh-Q microresonators. The long-term goal of this research is to realise on-chip, integrated frequency comb sources, enabling a range of novel technologies including ultraprecise lidar, ultracompact wideband optical fibre data transmitters, portable optical clocks for gravity sensing, and real-time multi-species trace gas spectroscopy for security, health and other applications.

Areas of interest

  • Experimental research into optical nonlinear effects in ultrahigh-Q microresonators including frequency comb generation and spontaneous symmetry breaking between counterpropagating light waves
  • Theoretical modelling and numerical simulation of optical nonlinear effects in microresonators
  • Fabrication of ultrahigh-Q silica microrod, microdisk and microtoroid resonators, integrated waveguide ring resonators and tapered optical fibres
  • Development of self-referenced octave-spanning microcombs for portable optical clocks and radar.

Key publications

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