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Department of Physics

The Cavendish Laboratory


I completed my PhD in the Cavendish in 1982, and then moved to the University of Exeter, and returned to the Cavendish again in 1992. Mostly my work has involved optical studies of solids, with the main emphasis being on trying to understand optical excitations within the quantum-mechanical description of the system rather than solely by phenomenological macroscopic models. Scientific links with colleagues elsewhere in Europe have been of key importance, and I have benefited greatly from periods as a Visiting Scientist at various times in the Max Planck Institute for Solid State Research in Stuttgart, the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne, the ETH Zurich and the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich.
In the past five years much of my time has been devoted to working with the architects and engineers on the specification and design of the new Cavendish Laboratory, a 32000 square metre teaching and research facility which the Physics Department will be moving into from 2023.


Application of optical spectroscopic methods to problems in solid state physics. This has included the very practical application of Raman spectroscopy for the optimisation of material properties in synthetic silica used for deep UV lithography, and the purely academic. The latter includes studies of exciton and biexciton quantum coherence, quantum coherence in conjugated polymers, and spin effects in semiconductor nanostructures. Current work includes further studies of spin-related phenomena in semiconductor wells and dots, and coherent dynamics of excitations in quantum dots and in microcavity polaritons. 


Key publications: 

This selection illustrates some of the topics of interest:

'Raman Spectrum of the Organic-Inorganic Halide Perovskite CH3NH3PbI3 from First Principles and High-Resolution Low-Temperature Raman Measurements'    
M.A. Perez-Osorio, Q.Q. Lin, R.T. Phillips, R.L. Milot, L.M. Herz, M.B. Johnston, F. Giustino,     Journal of Physical Chemistry C 122 21703-21717 (2018) DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpcc.8b04669

Felix Deschler, Michael Price, Sandeep Pathak, Lina E. Klintberg, David-Dominik Jarausch, Ruben Higler, Sven Huettner, Tomas Leijtens,; Samuel D.  Stranks, Henry J. Snaith, Mete Atatüre, Richard T. Phillips, Richard H. Friend, 'High Photoluminescence Efficiency and Optically Pumped Lasing in Solution-Processed Mixed Halide Perovskite Semiconductors', Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters 5 1421-1426 (2014). DOI: 10.1021/jz5005285

Pierre  Corfdir, Barbara Van Hattem, Emanuele Uccelli, Sonia Conesa-Boj, Pierre Lefebvre, Anna Fontcuberta i Morral, Richard T. Phillips,  'Three-Dimensional Magneto-Photoluminescence as a Probe of the Electronic Properties of Crystal-Phase Quantum Disks in GaAs Nanowires' Nano Letters 13 5303-5310 (2013). DOI: 10.1021/nl4028186

C. Creatore, R.T. Brierley, R.T. Phillips, P.B. Littlewood and P.R. Eastham, 'Creation of entangled states in coupled quantum dots via adiabatic rapid passage', Physical Review B86 155442 (2012). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevB.86.155442

Y.W. Wu, I.M. Piper, M. Ediger, P.Brereton, E.R. Schmidgall, P.R. Eastham, M. Hugues, M. Hopkinson and R.T. Phillips, ' Population Inversion in a Single InGaAs Quantum Dot Using the Method of Adiabatic Rapid Passage, Physical Review Letters 106 067401 (2011). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.106.067401

E.R.Schmidgall, P.R. Eastham, R.T. Phillips, 'Population inversion in quantum dot ensembles via adiabatic rapid passage'   Physical Review 81 195306 (2010). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevB.81.195306

D.D. Goller, R.T. Phillips and I.G. Sayce, 'Structural relaxation of SiO2 at elevated temperatures monitored by in situ Raman scattering '       J. Non-crystalline Solids 335 1747-1754 (2009). DOI: 10.1016/j.jnoncrysol.2009.06.018

P.S Eldridge, W.J.H. Leyland , P.G. Lagoudakis, O.Z. Karimov, M. Henini, D. Taylor, R.T. Phillips R.T. Harley             'All-optical measurement of Rashba coefficient in quantum wells' Physical Review  B77  125344   (2008), DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevB.77.125344

M. Ringler, T.A. Klar, A. Schwemer, A.S. Susha, J. Stehr, G. Raschke, S. Funk, M. Borowski, A. Nichtl, K. Kürzinger, R.T. Phillips, J. Feldmann, 'Moving nanoparticies with Raman scattering' Nano Letters  7   2753-2757   (2007). DOI: 10.1021/nl0712466

S.P. Kennedy, N. Garro and R.T. Phillips, 'Coherent manipulation of emission from a conjugated polymer',  Physical Review Letters 86 4148-4151 (2001).  DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.86.4148

N. Garro, M. J. Snelling, S.P. Kennedy,  R. T. Phillips and K. H. Ploog 'Coherent effects in resonant quantum well emission ', Physical Review B60 4497 (1999)

Professor of Physics
Fellow of Clare College

Contact Details

Mott Building
Cavendish Laboratory,
JJ Thomson Avenue
+44 (0)1223 337342