Our podcast ML4Q&A

Nature is fascinating and so is physics let alone quantum physics! Join us as we delve into the lives of scientists and the complexity of their research topics. Grab a drink, hop on a bus or go for a walk and listen to the many different stories about being a scientist and basically doing something for a living only a few can understand.

Our guests are all involved in the research mission of ML4Q, a German consortium dedicated to develop the best hardware platform for quantum information technology, and provide comprehensive blueprints for a functional quantum information network.

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We continue to feature some of our experimental physicists. In this episode, we talk to Annika Kurzmann, Junior Principle Investigator at RWTH Aachen and associated member of ML4Q. We discuss her work on optical quantum dots during her PhD and bilayer graphene quantum dots in her postdoc and how she is now bringing this together to detect single electron dots in graphene. We also discuss the Ruhrgebiet, tenure tracks and starting a lab during the pandemic.


Previous episodes


We continue to feature some of our experimental physicists. In this episode, we talk to Beata Kardynal, group leader at Forschungszentrum Jülich and at RWTH Aachen. We discuss her career and her training in electronic devices to using these devices to couple to single photons. She reveals her favorite materials and how she didn’t see a strong distinction between physics and engineering from the start.





ML4Q&A now moves on to feature some of our experimental physicists and we start with Rami Barends, recently appointed head of the Institute for Functional Quantum Systems at Forschungszentrum Jülich and associated member of ML4Q. Chris Dickel (postdoc in the Ando lab) prepared for our listeners a great outline touching upon different topics in Rami’s career and research experience. He starts off talking about his research on superconducting circuits and the long way from his PhD work on superconducting detectors for astrophysics to demonstrating beyond classical computation with superconducting qubits at Google. Chris also didn’t miss out on getting some impressions about the differences Rami experienced in conducting research in acadmia as opposed to his time at Google.



ML4Q&A continues featuring theoretical physicists in ML4Q. In the fourth episode, Federico Grasselli (Postdoc, Bruss group) speaks to Kathrin Dorn, PhD student in the group of Reinhold Egger, head of the Institute for Theoretical Physcs IV in Düsseldorf. They talk about Kathrin’s PhD project and how she started off to combine maths, physics and arts in her studies and ended up in analyzing theoretical aspects in topological insulators.


ML4Q&A continues featuring theoretical physicists in ML4Q. In the third episode, Kathrin Dorn (PhD student, Egger group) speaks to Dagmar Bruss, professor at the Institute for Theoretical Physcs III in Düsseldorf. They talk about Dagmar’s passion about quantum information theory, how a coffee break in Oxford changed her research focus to quantum key distribution, her experience with the impostor phenomenon and how she got involved in a supercosmos project in astronomical technology.


ML4Q&A continues featuring theoretical physicists in ML4Q. In the second episode, Chris Dickel is talking to David Gross, professor in Cologne and vice spokesperson of the ML4Q cluster. David’s research interests lie on the application of rigorous mathematical methods to problems in quantum information theory and many-body theory. We talk about his career path, advising student projects in theoretical physics, teaching quantum mechanics and the Google event he was probably never invited to.

In the first episode, we are talking to Martino Calzavara, a PhD researcher in the PGI-8 Institute for Quantum Control at the Forschungszentrum Jülich. We talk about him moving to Germany for his PhD and learning German, his experiences in academia as part of ML4Q as well as ultracold atom systems and how quantum control could help to cool these. We also talk about his simulations of these systems and machine learning, conferences in the times of a pandemic and Italian Pannetone vs. Pandoro. We also prepared this short video to give you a taste of the full episode.

What is ML4Q&A?


In our podcast series ML4Q&A we want to give researchers in the cluster the opportunity to explain their research activities to the scientific community and the scientifically interested public. We will talk about specific projects, but also about how the field of quantum technology is evolving and how it is to be part of this field. The podcast is going to feature the work of members in and close to ML4Q in different academic positions.

Why podcasting?


Because voice is the new thing! Well, this may be part of it, but we also want to offer content in different formats and make the travel sessions between the different locations of ML4Q (once travelling is possible again) more interesting by giving you something to listen to.

How often will episodes be released?
  Just make sure to subscribe to the podcast on your podcatcher and you will know whenever there is a new episode out for you 😉
What do you think? Do you have any suggestions for guests and topics?
Then write us an email to: ml4q-outreach(at)uni-koeln.de