Institute of Optics and Atomic Physics

Compulsory Elective Subject on Optics and Photonics (Physics BSc)


With the compulsory elective subject Optics and Photonics, the IOAP wants to inspire students of the bachelor's program in physics at an early stage, i.e. already from the first semester, for fundamentals and modern concepts as well as current applications of optical methods. The elective is divided into two modules, which can be taken independently and in any order:

  • Optics and Photonics I: always in winter semester
  • Optics and Photonics II: always in summer semester

Each module is an integrated course consisting of four hours of lecture per week plus exercises and practicals. Details can be found in the current course catalog and on the corresponding ISIS course pages.

Module Optics and Photonics I

The module introduces the fundamentals of optics and photonics and provides more in-depth knowledge on selected topics. A basic understanding of optical-physical phenomena is developed and an overview is given:

  • From the sun to the synchrotron - radiation sources in photonics
  • Light in optical fibers and waveguides
  • From the camera to the streak camera - detectors in optics
  • Optics on thin films and surfaces
  • Fundamentals of semiconductor nanophotonics
  • Fundamentals of photonic quantum technologies

Further details on the integrated course can be found in the course catalog (Lecture (WiSe 2023/24), Excercises and Practicals (WiSe 2023/24))  and on the ISIS course pages (WiSe 2023/24).

Module Optics and Photonics II

After a short mathematical introduction, this module first discusses basic optical phenomena based on Maxwell's equations. With this foundation, current research topics are then addressed. In detail, the following topics will be taught:

  • Introduction to the mathematical-physical basics
  • Holography
  • Basics of nonlinear (NL) optics
  • Ultra-short pulse laser
  • Methods of modern spectroscopy
  • Spatially and pulse resolved methods
  • THz Spectroscopy
  • Basics of electron optics and electron microscopy

Further details on the integrated course can be found in the course catalog (Lecture (SoSe 2023), Exercises and Practicals (SoSe 2023)) and on the ISIS course pages.

ECTS Credit Points

Each module Optics and Photonics I or II is concluded with an oral examination. Prerequisites for the examination are that (a) you have correctly calculated 50% of the exercises (these are handed in for correction in teams of two to three students) and (b) you have successfully completed the practical experiments in a team with a protocol. Each successfully completed module will be credited with 12 credit points according to ECTS.