About the Role

Do you have the skills to be part of NPL’s role in giving the UK a world-leading position in the rapidly developing quantum technology market?  The Quantum Electrical Metrology Group has an opening for Higher Research Scientist to work on the control of solid-state quantum systems.

You will be joining NPL’s Quantum Technologies Department at a very exciting time - as quantum phenomena are delivering breakthroughs in many areas, including increased information processing power, secure communications, high-precision measurement and sensing, and early diagnosis of diseases.

The Quantum Electrical Metrology Group undertakes research to establish new quantum standards for electrical base units and electrical quantities and new techniques for sensing and manipulating the quantum state of electrons in solids. We work with leading UK and European researchers from academia, our counterparts at other national laboratories and emerging players in the quantum technologies industry. This can be through scientific collaborations on topics such as control of ballistic electron transport in solids, experiments with other National Metrology Institutes (NMIs) on establishing the universality of single electron pumps or work with industrial customers on tests of components for use in quantum technology research.

Solid-state quantum technology requires several high-tech facilities. Through our own fabrication expertise and working with project partners we have capabilities for fabricating novel nanodevices. We also have multiple cryogenic measurement systems equipped with RF control and readout electronics, multi-channel control/acquisition systems.

Optimising the design and control of quantum devices is a huge challenge in many ways. We are currently growing our team of scientists to increase our ability to deliver both device-based research and novel measurement capability for our partners in the development of new quantum technologies. We are particularly interested in scientists with experience in one of the many areas that quantum technology research can involve (device fabrication, control software, electronic hardware, cryogenic systems).

The Quantum Electrical Metrology Group is a part of the Quantum Technologies Department, and we are an inclusive group of scientists who are supportive of each other and of our professional development. NPL is committed to a ‘digital NMI’ status, and as a team we are developing new digital ways of working, that not only increasing productivity and efficiency but through a combination of remote control and automation are allowing us to each have greater flexibility in our working patterns. Currently we perform a mixture of on-site experimental work and off-site remote work, working together and continually improving, to deliver excellent science that supports a positive work-life balance. We aspire to have greater diversity within our team and particularly encourage applications from women and those in underrepresented groups.


  • Experimental research on single-electron transport, electron quantum optics, cryogenic nanoelectronics and support the development of new and enhanced quantum electrical standards
  • Working with our fabrication team, design and optimise semiconductor nanodevices
  • Design, develop, and maintain cryogenic measurement systems
  • Collaborate with broader team/consortium on software/hardware interfacing challenges
  • Collaborate internally and externally in developing the concepts and theories in the field of quantum electrical metrology and quantum device control
  • Building experimental set-ups and bespoke instrumentation
  • Designing and implementing control and data analysis software
  • Analytic and numerical analysis of experimental data
  • Writing scientific papers and making conference presentations
  • Establishing and maintaining productive working relationships with UK and international partners
  • Opportunities to supervise PhD students
About You

Essential skills and experience:

  • PhD or equivalent research experience in physics or electronic engineering.
  • Experience of solid-state quantum systems (semiconductors, superconductors, etc)
  • Work experience within an engineering, research and development, or software/hardware development environment
  • Ability to work independently and collaboratively as part of a team, managing your time according to prioritisation
  • A rigorous approach to problem solving and ability to develop solutions to difficult problems
  • An inquisitive mind and willingness to interact dynamically within a team

Advantageous skills and experience include:

  • Experimental research on single-electron transport and related effects
  • Operation and maintenance of dilution refrigerators
  • Cryogenic electronics
  • Design and fabrication of solid-state devices
  • Electronics design and implementation
  • Programming experience: LabVIEW, MATLAB and Python are preferable
  • Working with radiofrequency/microwave electronic components
  • Advanced experience with software development and system integration
  • Working in projects with external collaborators

Applications will be reviewed, and interviews conducted throughout the duration of this advert therefore we may at any time bring the closing date forward.  We encourage all interested applicants to apply as soon as practical. 

About The Company

NPL and BEIS have strong commitments to diversity and equality of opportunity, and welcome applications from candidates irrespective of their background, gender, race, sexual orientation, religion, or age, providing they meet the required criteria. Applications from women, disabled and BAME candidates in particular are encouraged. All disabled candidates (as defined by the Equality Act 2010) who satisfy the minimum criteria for the role will be guaranteed an interview under the Disability Confident Scheme.

We’re transforming. As a national laboratory, we’re exploring even more commercial routes to market and that’s presenting us with greater opportunity – for you and us. Our success relies on the diversity and talent of our people, we strive to nurture and respect individuals to ensure everyone feels valued and supported to excel in their chosen field. This value is at the core of our organisation.

We believe in a culture of fairness by treating everyone on the basis of their own individual merits and abilities regardless of their own or perceived identity, background or any other factor irrelevant to a person’s work. At NPL we are committed to the health and well-being of our employees. Flexible working and social activities are embedded in our culture to create a positive work-life balance, along with a broad range of benefitsNPL’s values are at the heart of what we do and they shape the way we interact, develop our people and celebrate success.

As part of our commitment to diversity & inclusion, we signed up to the Institute of Physics' Project Juno in 2015 as a Juno Supporter. NPL were proud to be awarded Juno Practitioner status in 2018. NPL also joined Stonewall as a Diversity champion in 2015, participating in their annual Workplace Equality Index for the equality of LGBT+ community at NPL. In 2018, NPL became a member of the Business Disability Forum and joined the disability confident scheme as level 1 committed employer.

To ensure everyone has an equal chance, we’re always willing to make reasonable adjustments to the recruitment process. If you would like to discuss, please contact us.