Kick-off meeting of FET Project “Q-MIC”

Consortium members gather to give start to the FET project Q-MIC, aimed at developing a lens-free microscope enhanced by quantum light

Officially launched on Monday October 1st with the formal kick-off meeting taking place at ICFO, the Future and Emerging Technologies (FET) project Q-MIC (Quantum-enhanced on-chip interference microscopy) is now in motion.

Q-MIC will aim to develop a new on-chip differential interference contrast microscope based on an unconventional birefringence lens-free configuration, with the latest quantum sources and single-photon image sensors. The Q-MIC platform will introduce a new type of interferometric microscopy without lenses and illuminated by quantum light, which will allow detection of ultrathin transparent materials, such as photosensitive cells and biological tissues, over large areas (several cm2), with unprecedented sensitivities (≈1 Å) and low powers (in the range of fW).

This three-year project will be coordinated by ICREA Professor at ICFO Valerio Pruneri, in collaboration with researchers from Institute of Quantum Optics and Quantum Information(OEAW), Politecnico di Milano, University of Glasgow and Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering together with the companies Carl Zeiss and Micro Photon devices.

During the full day event on October 2nd, partners presented latest advances on their respective technology to the rest of the consortium members and the different work packages that will be executed during the project’s duration, putting into perspective the needs and solutions for the development of this radically new technique that could drastically improve the current limitations of differential interference contrast (DIC) microscopy.