CQE PI Feature – Jelena Notaros
Featured in QSEC January newsletter 2024
Jelena Notaros is the Robert J. Shillman Career Development Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT and a Principal Investigator in the Research Laboratory of Electronics, where she leads the MIT Photonics and Electronics Research Group (http://www.mit.edu/~notaros/).
By enabling the integration of millions of micro-scale optical components on compact millimeter-scale chips, the field of silicon photonics is positioned to enable next-generation optical technologies that facilitate revolutionary advances for numerous fields spanning science and engineering. In the MIT Photonics and Electronics Research Group, Notaros and her students are developing novel silicon-photonics-based platforms, devices, and systems that enable innovative solutions to high-impact problems in areas including augmented-reality displays, LiDAR sensing for autonomous vehicles, free-space optical communications, 3D printing, biophotonics, and trapped-ion quantum systems.
As one example, with support from the MIT Center for Quantum Engineering, Notaros and her students are currently developing integrated-photonics-based devices and systems for trapped-ion quantum systems in collaboration with MIT Lincoln Laboratory. Trapped ions are a promising modality for quantum information processing due to their long coherence times and strong ion-ion interactions, which enable high-fidelity two-qubit gates. However, most current implementations are comprised of complex free-space optical systems, whose large size and susceptibility to vibration and drift can limit the fidelity and addressability of ion arrays, hindering scaling to large numbers of qubits. Integrated-photonics-based devices and systems, such as those being developed by Notaros, her students, and their collaborators, offer an avenue to address these challenges in an inherently scalable and stable way.
Prior to starting her faculty position at MIT, Notaros received her Ph.D. and M.S. degrees from MIT in 2020 and 2017, respectively, and B.S. degree from the University of Colorado Boulder in 2015. Notaros was one of three Top DARPA Risers, a 2018 DARPA D60 Plenary Speaker, a 2023 NSF CAREER Award recipient, a 2021 Forbes 30 Under 30 Listee, a 2021 MIT Robert J. Shillman Career Development Chair recipient, a 2020 MIT RLE Early Career Development Award recipient, a 2015 MIT Herbert E. and Dorothy J. Grier Presidential Fellow, a 2015-2020 NSF Graduate Research Fellow, a 2019 OSA CLEO Chair’s Pick Award recipient, a 2022 OSA APC Best Paper Award recipient, a 2022 OSA FiO Emil Wolf Best Paper Award Finalist, a 2014 IEEE Region 5 Paper Competition First Place recipient, a 2023 MIT Louis D. Smullin Award for Teaching Excellence recipient, a 2018 MIT EECS Rising Star, a 2014 Sigma Xi Undergraduate Research Award recipient, and a 2015 CU Boulder Chancellor’s Recognition Award recipient, among other honors.