Our Team

Group Leader


Roberto Morandotti

Group Leader

Roberto Morandotti, Professor at INRS-EMT since 2008, has a broad knowledge in the field of photonics, ranging from the fabrication of integrated devices to the use of state-of-the-art optical characterization techniques in the Infrared and Terahertz frequency domains. During the last years, he has established a novel and very successful line of research in nonlinear optics and integrated photonics. Some of his most important realizations are related to the demonstration of discrete solitons in an array of optical waveguides, as well as, more recently, the realization of integrated classical and quantum frequency combs.

Research Associates


Yoann Jestin

Research Associate

Yoann Jestin received his PhD (2002) in solid state chemistry from the “Université du Maine” (France) working on a project supported by the French National Network in Research and Telecommunications. His work was related to the design, manufacturing and testing of large numerical aperture fluoride based optical fibers for the realization of an optical amplifier prototype working in the S-band telecommunication window. In 2003 he joined the research center on laser and application at the University of Lille as a postdoctoral student to study and characterize semiconductor quantum dots in amorphous thin films. After this period he joined the CNR-IFN (Trento, Italy) with a grant from the local government of province of Trento, to work on the development of ultra-transparent glass ceramics waveguides for the demonstration of an optical single frequency amplifier in the C-band telecommunication window. In 2009 he worked as a researcher at the Bruno Kessler Foundation (Trento, Italy) to conduct research on the micro-fabrication of nanocrystalline based silicon solar cells. Since 2013 he won a mobility fellowship to visit the INRS-EMT and experiment new materials and structures for integrated nonlinear optics.

Research Technicians


Rob Helsten

Research Technician

Rob Helsten completed a BSc in physics from the University of Waterloo in 2004. Upon obtaining that degree he relocated to Montreal to study under the supervision of professor Roberto Morandotti. In 2007 he received a MSc degree for his work entitled “Characterization of the Electro-Optical Effect in CBN Thin Films”. He is currently employed by the UOP group as the research technician.

Post-docs Fellows


Michael Kues

Post-Doc Fellow

Michael Kues received his Diploma degree in Physics in October 2009 from the University of Münster (Germany) with a thesis on “Supercontinuum Generation with Feedback”. In August 2013 he successfully defended his Ph.D. thesis entitled “Seeded and Self-Seeded Nonlinear Effects for Pulse Control in Optical Fibers” developed in the Optical Technologies group at University of Münster under the supervision of Prof. Fallnich (University of Münster) and the co-supervision of Prof. Boller (University of Twente) and graduated with distinction (highest honors). His Ph.D. focused on the experimental observation, characterization and comprehensive theoretical explanation of nonlinear system dynamics in synchronously driven passive nonlinear fiber ring resonators as well as the theoretical prediction and experimental verification of controlling modulation instability processes in nonlinear optical fibers. Apart from his work on nonlinear fiber optics, during his Ph.D. Michael also worked in the field of random lasers which has been supported by the German Ministry of Education and Research within the PEARLS project. Particularly he investigated the laser’s polarization dynamics and developed the first prototype of an anti-counterfeiting marker based on the polarization characteristics of a random laser.


Benjamin Wetzel

Post-Doc Fellow

Benjamin Wetzel received his Master degree in Optics and Photonics in 2009 (high honors) from University of Franche-Comté (Besançon, France). His Master research, held in Prof. E. O’Reilly’s group at Tyndall National Institute (Cork, Ireland), was focused on semiconductor laser injection stabilities and dynamics. In 2009, he started a Ph.D. related to the study of nonlinear dynamics and instabilities in optical fiber propagation at University of Franche-Comté. This work, carried out at FEMTO-ST Institute under the supervision of Prof J. M. Dudley and Prof. L. Larger, involved several topics including supercontinuum generation, nonlinear and complex dynamics in fiber propagation, ultrafast optical pulse characterization as well as random processes and extreme event formation. In December 2012, he successfully defended his Ph.D thesis and subsequently started a position as CNRS Research Engineer at the same institute, working on femtosecond ablation, non-diffracting beams spatial shaping and graphene photonics. Since January 2014, he joined Prof. Morandotti’s group at INRS-EMT as a Postdoctoral fellow.


Fabio Grazioso

Post-Doc Fellow

Fabio Grazioso received his Master degree (laurea magistrale) in physics in 2004, from University of Naples "Federico II" (Italy), defending an experimental thesis with the title: "Realization of an Optical Parametric Oscillator with poled crystal for an infrared spectroscopic apparatus". This thesis research project was supervised by prof. Salvatore Solimeno. He then worked for two years as research specialist in the R&D lab of "duepigreco s.r.l.", developing a prototype for a Quantum Key Distribution cryptographic device. duepigreco s.r.l. was also the sole Italian representative for It was sole agent for Italy for the quantum encryption devices of MagiQ inc. (www.magiqtech.com). In 2006 he started his doctorate at the University of Oxford, and he received his DPhil degree in 2011, defending an experimental thesis with the title "Spectroscopy of Single Colour Centres in Ultra-Pure Synthetic Diamonds", supervised by prof. Jason M. Smith and prof. Pieter Kok. During his doctorate dr. Grazioso has teached as tutor for Mansfield College's undergraduate students, for the course of "Fourier Series and Partial Differential Equations". He has then been postdoctoral fellow at École Normale Superiéure de Cachan (France) until 2012, working in the group of prof. Jean-François Roch, and collaborating with dr. Frédéric Grosshans in several research projects: an experimental project on QKD using NV centres in diamond as single photon source; a device-independent theoretical model of Quantum Random Number Generators; a theoretical description of a robust, sifting-less Quantum Key Distribution protocol, with discrete variables and an arbitrary number of states. From 2012 he has worked as postdoctoral fellow at Université de Montréal, in the Laboratoire d'Informatique théorique et quantique (LITQ) of prof. Gilles Brassard, collaborating with him to extend the complexity model for quantum algorithms beyond the query complexity model. In late 2014 he has started to collaborate as postdoctoral fellow in Roberto Morandotti's group (UOP), at INRS, working on the quantum properties of the non-linear micro-ring resonator and single photon source recently developed by the group. He has recently been awarded a MITACS Accelerate internship funding.


Andrey Markov

Post-Doc Fellow

Andrey Markov received his MSc degree from the Physics department of the prestigious Lomonosov Moscow State University in 2009, studying generation and propagation of high-power ultrashort pulses. He then worked in the laboratory of Spectroscopy of Ultrafast Processes in the Institute for Spectroscopy, Russia, researching ultrafast electronic dynamics in laser-excited materials. Since June 2015, shortly after earning his Ph.D. degree working in the Complex Photonic Structures and Processes Group at École Polytechnique de Montreal, Dr. Markov became a member of Prof. Roberto Morandotti’s group (UOP) at INRS-EMT where he carries out his postdoctoral work on terahertz sensing and communications applications. In August 2015, Andrey Markov received the Mitacs Elevate Postdoctoral Fellowship for his project “Terahertz metamaterial sensors for monitoring of the insulation material quality” aimed at reducing the risk of electric discharges in insulation materials which present a risk of electrocution, explosion, or fire.


Andrew Bruhacs

Post-Doc Fellow

Andrew Bruhacs is a trained chemist who graduated with a diploma degree from the Johannes-Gutenberg University in Mainz, Germany in 2008. During this period, under the supervision of Prof. Wolfgang Tremel he published works regarding the synthesis, characterization and tribological applications of transition metal chalcogenide inorganic fullerenes, in collaboration with the LTDS institute in Lyon. In collaboration with the team of Prof. Mohamed Chaker at INRS-EMT he discovered and characterized a metastable ultrafast photo-induced phase of vanadium dioxide (thin film) using spectroscopy as well as sub-picosecond ultrabright electron pulses. Following his graduation from McGill University in 2015 he is currently working as a post-doctoral researcher in the nonlinear photonics group of Morandotti, focusing on technologies for THz generation, detection as well as THz thermal imaging applications in biological tissue.


Riccardo Piccoli

Post-Doc Fellow

Riccardo Piccoli received, in July 2009, his Bachelor's Degree in Electronic Engineering from University of Pavia (Italy), discussing the thesis: "Characterization of spectral and spatial profile of laser sources". Then, in 2010, he received a Diploma in Piano from the Academy of Music and, finally, the Master's Degree in Optoelectronic Engineering in July 2011 defending a thesis on tunable passively mode-locked Yb-doped fiber laser stabilized by spectral filtering supervised by Prof. G. Reali and Prof. A. Agnesi. In novembre 2011 he started a PhD related to the design, development and characterization of ultrafast passively mode-locked Yb-doped oscillators and amplifiers at the same university. He also investigated frequency down conversion in the mid-IR via parametric generation (OPG/OPA) as application of pulsed fiber lasers in MOPA configuration in collaboration with Max Born Institute (Prof. V. Petrov, Berlin). He then did a period abroad at Swansea University (Wales, Uk), Multidipliscinary Nanotechnology Center, under the supervision of Prof. S. Taccheo, where he studied Photodarkening effect in aluminosilicate highly Yb-doped fibers. This research was a part of the european project LIFT (Leadership in Fiber Technology, Grant 228587). Since February 2015, he joined INRS-EMT as a Postdoctoral Fellow under the supervision of Prof. R. Morandotti and Prof. L. Razzari, where he is investigating Terahertz broadband pulse generation and guiding as well as design and characterization of nanoplasmonic devices.


Tao Wang

Post-Doc Fellow

Tao Wang received his Master degree in material science in 2012, from Anhui University (PRC), the thesis is titled by: “Controllable Synthesis and Properties of Al, Co doped ZnO nanomaterials”. Then he started his Ph.D. study in physics under the supervision of Prof. Gian Luca Lippi in 2013, in the group of Dynamique et Complexité Photoniques of Institut Non Linéaire de Nice-Sophia Antipolis (INLN), France. In April of 2016, he successfully defended his thesis which is entitled by “Coherence Buildup and Nonlinear Dynamics in Mesoscale Lasers”. His Ph.D. study is focusing on the experimental characterization of coherence properties in very small lasers through correlation functions and dynamics. In addition, he also developed one technique which can synchronously characterize the laser beam by intensity and emission frequency distribution.

Tobias Hansson

Post-Doc Fellow

Tobias Hansson received his M.Sc. degree in engineering physics in 2007 from Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, after completing thesis work on optical time-domain methods at Dartmouth College, USA, in the group of Prof. Ulf Österberg. In 2007 he started Ph.D. studies under the supervision of Prof. Mietek Lisak and Prof. Dan Anderson in the Nonlinear Electrodynamics group at Chalmers University of Technology. He received the Swedish licentiate degree and the Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering in 2009 and 2011, respectively, for his theoretical work in nonlinear optics on the topic of partially coherent wave propagation, and his investigations of the nonlinear dynamics of solitary waves and instability phenomena in slowly responding nonlinear media.

Young Zhang

Post-Doc Fellow

Young Zhang obtained his bachelor degree in physics from Wuhan University of Technology (China) in 2007 and received his Master degree in Microelectronics in 2011 from the Nanyang Technological University (Singapore) after working for two years on induced-transparency in coupled microring resonators. After visiting University of Colorado at Boulder (US) for one-year, he moved to Australia in 2012 to pursue his PhD in CUDOS under the supervision of Prof. Benjamin Eggleton at the University of Sydney. In March 2016 he successfully completed his Ph.D. thesis entitled “Phase-sensitive amplification in integrated Kerr media ”. His Ph.D. mainly focused on the theoretical investigation and experimental demonstration of nonlinear parametric amplification processes in silicon and chalcogenide waveguides. Apart from that, his was also involved in projects of stimulated Brillouin scattering, single photon generation and soliton observation in integrated platforms during his PhD researches.

PhD Students


Alessandro Tomasino

PhD Student

Alessandro Tomasino started his studies in Electronics Engineering at the University of Palermo (Italy) in 2006, gaining its Bachelor Degree (Magna cum Laude) in February 2010. He received its Master Degree (Magna cum Laude) in Electronics and Photonics Engineering in May 2012, from the University of Palermo (Palermo, Italy), defending an experimental thesis titled “Implementation of numerical algorithms to study and simulate optical propagation problems”. In 2013, he worked for one year as Research Collaborator at the University of Palermo, joining the group of Prof. Busacca and dealing with the implementation of an electronic embedded system for functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS), with applications within the biomedical area.


Andrea Rovere

PhD Student

Andrea Rovere started his studies in physics at La Sapienza – University of Rome (Italy) in 2009, and he obtained its Bachelor Degree in December 2012. Then he specialized in condensed matter physics at the same University. Part of the experimental work of his thesis has took place at the National Laboratories of Frascati, under the supervision of the Prof. Stefano Lupi (Department of physics, La Sapienza) and the Dr. Enrica Chiadroni (SPARC-lab, LNF). He achieved the Master Degree in Physics in October 2014, defending an experimental thesis titled “Nonlinear THz Spectroscopy on Topological Insulator”.


Christian Reimer

PhD Student

Christian Reimer started his studies in physics at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in Germany in October 2006. In May 2010 he graduated from Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh (Scotland) with a Master of Physics in Optoelectronics and Laser (First Class Honors), defending a thesis on single photon detection and quantum optics, supervised by Prof. Gerald Buller and in collaboration with Prof. Miles Padgett (Glasgow University). He then did an internship at the research unit of Draeger Inc. in Germany, where he worked on the remote sensing of gases using mid-infrared spectroscopy. Christian returned to KIT and graduated in May 2012 with his second graduate degree (German Diplom in Physics, equivalent to a Master of Science). For his second research thesis, he participated in a one-year long research visit at the University of St Andrews (Scotland, Prof. Thomas F. Krauss) and the University of Sydney (Australia, Prof. Benjamin Eggleton), where he specialized on the design, fabrication and characterization of mid-infrared photonic crystals in silicon. During his research project Christian achieved the first demonstration of mid-infrared photonic crystal waveguides in silicon.


Diego Caraffini

PhD Student

Diego Caraffini graduated in particle physics in 2000, at “Università degli studi di Perugia”, where he also obtained his Ph.D. for a thesis titled “Anti-proton Flux Detection and Indirect Search for Dark Matter with the AMS-02 Experiment.” The thesis used the experiment Monte Carlo production, to study the rejection power for misidentified electrons and protons, that constitute the principal background in the measurement of the antiproton flux. The evaluated level of contamination, was used to assess the experiment capability to identify different Super Symmetric Dark Matter signatures as excess components in the cosmic antiproton flux. During his Ph.D., Dr. Caraffini developed a laser system dedicated to the evaluation “on bench” of the resistance to radiation damage (radiation hardness) of integrated circuits, intended to perform preliminary characterization of alternative components for the experimental apparatus, that was under construction at the time.


Giacomo Balistreri

PhD Student

Giacomo Balistreri started his studies in Electronics Engineering at the University of Palermo (Italy) in 2007. He took his Bachelor of Science Degree in October 2013. He continued his studies at the University of Palermo. In October 2015, he received his Master of Science Degree (Magna cum Laude) in Electronics and Photonics Engineering, defending and experimental thesis titled “Terahertz radiation generation and detection methods, for spectroscopic applications, based on photoconductive antennas”. In November 2015, he started his PhD studies with a jointed supervision of the University of Palermo and the INRS-EMT, about the design and implementation of a new class of devices for Terahertz radiation, aimed at Terahertz signal processing operations.


Stefania Sciara

PhD Students

Stefania Sciara is a PhD student, who is attending an international doctorate shared between the Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique-Centre Énergie Matériaux Télécommunications (INRS-EMT) and the University of Palermo-Department of Energy, Information Engineering and Mathematical Models, Italy. Since February 2016 she has joint the Optical Ultrafast Process (UOP), supervised by Prof. Roberto Morandotti. Stefania dedicated her academic studies to Physics, especially in Quantum Mechanics and in Quantum Information Theory. On 26th March 2014 she got the Bachelor Degree (Summa cum Laude) in Physical Sciences at University of Palermo-Department of Physics and Chemistry, defending a thesis titled “Gauge Invariance in Quantum Mechanics. The Aharonov-Bohm Effect”, under the supervision of Prof. Giuseppe Compagno (University of Palermo). After the first degree, Stefania attended the Master courses on Physics-curriculum Theoretical Physics at University of Palermo, where she majored in Quantum Optics and Quantum Information Theory, improving her theoretical background acquired previously.


Domenico Bongiovanni

PhD Student

Domenico Bongiovanni obtained his Bachelor and Master degrees in Electronics Engineering at the University of Palermo (Italy), defending a thesis entitled "Silicon Photomultiplier Circuit Model." His thesis work was focused on developing an electrical circuit model for a silicon photomultiplier, used in nuclear physics. This work was carried out during an internship of two year at the Sensor Design Group of the STMicroelectronics of Catania. Since September 2011 he is a PhD student at l’Institut National de Recherche Scientifique – Énergie, Matériaux et Télécommunications (INRS-EMT), under the supervision of Prof. R. Morandotti. His research work aims at investigating the propagation of Airy Beams into nonlinear media.


Holger Breitenborn

PhD Student

Holger Breitenborn graduated in 2002 from the University of Applied Science in Zwickau, Germany with a Master's degree in Industrial Engineering and Management. The main focus of his study laid not only on physics, engineering, and quality control but also on business, finance, and management. Moreover, Holger graduated from the Dresden International University in 2006 with a Master of Business Administration. From 2007 to 2014, Holger has gained professional experience in a scientific surrounding by working as Innovation Manager at the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering in Jena, Germany which conducts application-oriented research in the field of optical system engineering. During these years, he has developed a strong interest in optical technology and engineering. In May 2014, Holger joined INRS-EMT as a Master’s student under the supervision of Prof. Roberto Morandotti, where he is investigating plasmonic heating and temperature sensing in the Terahertz regime useful for thermometry and imaging technologies. In particular, his research topic is be related to domains including detection, spectroscopy and imaging and is based on the engineering and fabrication of a prototype for the photonics industry.


Piotr Roztocki

PhD Student

Piotr Roztocki is a physicist with a broad interdisciplinary background, interested in applied and fundamental research in the fields of nonlinear, integrated, and quantum optics. Piotr graduated with distinction in May 2014 from McMaster University in Hamilton (Canada) with an Honours Bachelor of Science in Integrated Science & Physics. This mixed degree offered him the opportunity to focus his studies on physics and photonics, while also providing considerable exposure to other disciplines (biology, chemistry, geology, etc.) valuable in bridging optics to its industrial applications. Piotr was the recipient of two NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Awards, holding research positions at Ryerson University (2012) and the University of Toronto (2013). His work in medical physics, focused on accounting for respiratory motion during radiotherapy (Prof. Emily Heath), and his work in quantum information, focused on numerical approaches to measurement device independent quantum key distribution (Prof. Hoi-Kwong Lo) have been recognized on a national and international scale at undergraduate conferences.

Master Students


Mehedi Islam

Master Student

Mehedi Islam obtained his Bachelor of Science with distinction in Electrical and Electronic Engineering in November 2014 from Islamic University of Technology (Bangladesh), defending a thesis titled “Parameter Optimization of Optical Materials and Investigation of Surface Plasmon Polariton (SPP) Propagation in Plasmonic Waveguides”. In April 2016, Mehedi joined at the l’Institut National de Recherche Scientifique – Énergie, Matériaux et Télécommunications (INRS-EMT) as a Master’s student, under the supervision of Prof. Roberto Morandotti, where his research project is devoted to “On-chip quantum optical random number generators”.