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Les Houches PreDoc School / École Prédoctorale de Physique des Houches

Once again, we are organizing a pre-doctoral school to be held in Les Houches in September 16-27, 2013. The title of the school is "Manipulation of quantum degenerate gases."

It consists in a two week master course on the physics of cold atoms. A series of lectures will be devoted to the basic techniques to reach the quantum degenerate regime, and the remarkable properties of this regime. A second series of lectures will deal with the specific properties of low dimensional systems and the non equilibrium dynamics in quantum systems. The course is targeted at the advanced undergraduate level and emphasizes formal lectures building on textbook knowledge. This goal meets the requirements of the Les Houches pre-doctoral school program. The course is intended for PhD students in their first or second year. Undergraduates at the European Masters level who are planning a PhD study are also invited to apply. Young post-docs entering the field can also apply.

The lectures will be given (in English).

  • Introduction : Sandro Stringari (1 lecture)
  • Philippe Verkerk (4 lectures) Light-Matter Interaction / Laser Cooling and Trapping
  • Jook Walraven (5 lectures) Evaporative cooling and BEC
  • Misha Baranov (4 lectures) Introduction to quantum degenerate gases
  • Hélène Perrin (3 lectures) Adiabatic potentials
  • Anatoli Polkovnikov (5 lectures) Out-of-equilibrium physics
  • Thorsten Schumm (3 lectures) Matter wave optics on atom chips
  • Isabelle Bouchoule (3 lectures) 1D-physics
  • Markus Holzmann (3 lectures) : Quantum Phases in Quasi-Two Dimensions
  • Jakob Reichel (3 lectures) : High resolution Imaging

The course has been initiated several years ago by the International Cold Atom Network, InterCAN (, which is promoting European collaboration of research and education in the field of dilute atomic and molecular quantum systems. Now, the "GdR atomes froids" (French CNRS Research Network is keeping it running.

The school is also open to young Post-Docs who are entering the field (to maintain a coherent educational level of the participants, applications from experienced post-docs will be considered at the end of the selection process).

And convince your student(s) to apply. The application is done on-line, and your student will have to up-load a file with his/her curriculum vitae. You will have to send a recommendation letter for your student(s), by mail to The deadline for applications is June 23rd. The selection of the applicants will be done during the first week of July.

The price for board and lodging in Les Houches is very low to facilitate the venue of young students (500 Euros for students in the first two years of PhD and 675 for the others). We have a very few grants to pay the board and lodging (not for travel expenses). Applications arriving after June 23rd can be considered, if the number of participants remains reasonable. But no grant can be attributed to those arriving late.