Welcome to the quantum nano-optoelectronics group of Frank Koppens

Positions Available!

Contact Frank Koppens for positions

(Research engineer, Postdoc, PhD)



Research engineers and PhD positions available

For the research and development of graphene optical sensors, metamaterials etc. See jobs.icfo.eu

We are also looking for engineers with image sensor experience. Please contact Frank Koppens

This website is not fully up to date. For latest news and publications:



Graphene workshop:


IUPAP Young Scientist Prize

Frank Koppens receives award from the International Commission for Optics and the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics

ICREA Prof at ICFO and leader of the Nano-Optoelectronics group, Frank Koppens, has been named by the International Commission for Optics and the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics as the recipient of the 2015 IUPAP Young Scientist Prize in Optics. The Prize citation reads "for his remarkable, outstanding, groundbreaking, pioneering and numerous contributions to Nano-Optoelectronics". 

This prize is awarded to individuals who have made noteworthy contributions to applied optics and photonics during a maximum of 8 years of research experience after having earned a PhD degree. This prestigious prize clearly recognizes Frank as someone to watch in the future for even more outstanding scientific contribution to Optics and Photonics. 

Published in Nature Communications:

Nano-photonics meets nano-mechanics


Published in Nature Nanotechnology:

Graphene speeds up light-to-electricity conversion 

Highly efficient carrier heating after light absorption leads to ultrafast (<50 fs) photovoltage creation

National Research Award for Young Talent

FCRi and the Government of Catalonia recognize Frank Koppens.

The Catalan Foundation for Research and Innovation (FCRi), with support from the Government of Catalonia, announces the 2015 National Research Awards, which aim to promote the recognition of science, with a particular focus on educating Catalan society on the scientific activity carried out by researchers working here. 

The National Research Award in the Young Talent category is given each year to encourage and recognize the efforts of young researchers who stand out for the quality and excellence of their scientific work and research. It is with great pleasure that we announce that this year’s award goes to ICREA Professor at ICFO, Frank Koppens, specialist in the nano-optoelectronics of graphene. 

ICFO congratulates awardees in all of the categories, including Prof. Dr. Manel Esteller, winner of the 2015 National Research Award; The Fundació Catalunya-La Pedrera in the category of Scientific Patronage; the program Quèquicom” from Televisió de Catalunya in the category of Scientific Communication; and the Fundació Alícia, in the category of Public-Private partnerships. 

Prototype flexible sensors

Published in Nature Nanotechnology:

Graphene speeds up light-to-electricity conversion
Highly efficient carrier heating after light absorption leads to ultrafast (<50 fs) photovoltage creation

More news here:

Published in Nature Nanotechnology:

Graphene speeds up light-to-electricity conversion
Highly efficient carrier heating after light absorption leads to ultrafast (<50 fs) photovoltage creation

More news here:


On 3 and 4 Februari:

Workshop Graphene-connect, covering opto-electronics, flexible electronics and garphene devices.


Published in Nano Letters:
Graphene can detect mid-infrared light in a special way

Published in Nature Materials:
Graphene plasmons go ballistic (click link for popular news article)

Graphene combined with the insulating power of boron nitride enables light control in tiny circuits with dramatically reduced energy loss.

Published in Nature Nanotechnology:

Review on photodetectors

Published in Nature Nanotechnology:
Ultrafast electronic read-out of diamond NV centers coupled to graphene 

 A new method to use graphene for read-out of light emission and electron spins.

Published in Science:Focusing and bending of light with graphene


Media coverage:


Prototype graphene detector presented at Graphene2014 conference in Toulouse

Samsung visits ICFO

Chinese graphene delegation at ICFO


Published in PRL (in collaboration with Darrick Chang and Majiec Lewenstein):

Harnessing vacuum forces for quantum sensing of graphene motion 

A novel method to use graphene for harnessing Casimir forces for quantum sensing


Graphene research at ICFO:

Visit: graphene.icfo.eu

Video on RTV

Just published in PRL:
Single-photon nonlinear optics with graphene plasmons

Just published in Nano Letters: 

Strong Plasmon Reflection at Nanometer-Size Gaps in Monolayer Graphene on SiC


On Arxiv (in collaboration with Javier Garcia de Abajo Darrick Chang and Misha Lukin):

Single-photon non-linear optics with graphene plasmons 

A novel method to exploit the unique properties of graphene to boost non-linear optics to the level of single photons

Louis Gaudreau wins best presentation award at Carbonhagen 2013

Just launched: graphene.icfo.eu

Just published in Nano Letters (by Louis Gaudreau et al.):

Universal Distance-Scaling of Non-radiative Energy Transfer to Graphene

Graphene is shown to be an extraordinary energy sink, holding great potential for photodetection , energy harvesting, and nanophotonics.

Interestingly, the near-field interaction between fluorescent emitters and graphene exhibits rich physics associated with local dipole-induced electromagnetic fields that are strongly enhanced due to the unique properties of graphene. One particular example is the non-radiative energy transfer from light emitters to graphene. Recently, efficient energy-transfer from bio-molecules to graphene has sparked tremendous interest for sensing purposes. We experimentally and theoretically quantified this energy transfer process and find that the emitter decay rate is enhanced by almost 90 times due to non-radiative coupling to graphene. This surprisingly strong coupling is attributed to the strong light-matter interactions due to the absence of a bandgap and the two-dimensionality of graphene. 

Nano Letters 2013

Just published in Physical Review B 
(in collaboration with Justin Song and Leonid Levitov, MIT):
Photoexcited carrier dynamics and impact-excitation cascade in graphene 

Graphene appointed an EU Future Emerging Technology flagship. 

The European Commission has chosen Graphene as one of Europe’s first 10-year, 1,000 million euro FET flagships. The mission of Graphene is to take graphene and related layered materials from academic laboratories to society, revolutionize multiple industries and create economic growth and new jobs in Europe.

Research work is divided into 11 scientific and technological work packages. 

Frank Koppens will play a leading role, with the University of Cambridge as a co-leader of the Optoelectonics work package. 

More info on the graphene flagship website

Published in Nature Physics:

Photo-excitation Cascade and Multiple Carrier Generation in Graphene
We found that graphene is a promising material for highly efficient broadband extraction of light energy into electronic degrees of freedom, enabling a new class of high-efficiency optoelectronic and photovoltaic applications.


Published in Nature Nanotechnology:
3D optical manipulation of a single electron spin
Michael Geiselmann, Mathieu Juan, Jan Renger, Jana M. Say, Louise J. Brown, F. Javier Garcia de Abajo,Frank Koppens and Romain Quidant

Published in ACS Nano!

A collaborative project of Rice University and ICFO managed to realize doping of graphene with light in a way that could lead to the more efficient design and manufacture of electronics, as well as novel security and cryptography devices.

Plasmon-Induced Doping of Graphene
Zheyu Fang, Z. Yumin Wang, Zheng Liu, Andrea Schlather, Pulickel M. Ajayan, Frank H. L. Koppens, Peter Nordlander, and Naomi J. Halas
ACS Nano (2012)

PhD positions available (contact Frank Koppens)

ERC Starting Grant Awarded to Frank Koppens

Frank Koppens has been awarded a European Research Council Starting Grant to pursue his project “Carbon Light”. The project aims to bridge the unique nano-optical and nano-electronic properties of graphene to capture and manipulate light at extremely small scales and to reveal the intriguing physics of quantum electrodynamics at the level single electrons and photons, trapped into nano-structured graphene. 

The European Research Council is a research funding body created under the EU's 7th Framework Programme for Research. The ERC Starting Grant was created in response to a deficit of funding opportunities for exceptional young researchers at an important development stage of their careers, and offers important opportunities for early career independence. 

Published in Nature:


Scientists visualize the trapping and confinement of light on graphene, making a sheet of carbon atoms the most promising candidate for optical information processing on the nano-scale.  

Synergies between theoretical proposals from CSIC (Madrid), specializations in graphene nano-photonics and nano-optoelectonics at ICFO (Barcelona), and experimental expertise in optical nano-imaging at Nanogune (San Sebastian) give rise to these noteworthy results reported in Nature this week.  

Optical nano-imaging of gate-tunable graphene plasmons, Jianing Chen, Michela Badioli, Pablo Alonso-González, Susokin Thongrattanasiri, Florian Huth, Johann Osmond, Marko Spasenović, Alba Centeno, Amaia Pesquera, Philippe Godignon, Amaia Zurutuza, Nicolas Camara, Javier García de Abajo, Rainer Hillenbrand & Frank Koppens (Nature, DOI: 10.1038/nature11254)

Final f

Published in Nature Nanotechnology:

"Hybrid graphene-quantum dot photodetector with ultra-high gain". In collaboration with the group of Gerasimos Konstantatos


Frank won the Christiaan Huygens Award. 

Louis Gaudreau was awarded the prestigious ICFO-nest fellowship.

Klaas-Jan Tielrooij wins the FOM thesis prize


Complete optical absorption in periodically patterned graphene
S. Thongrattanasiri, F. H. L. Koppens, F. J. García de Abajo
Phys. Rev. Lett. 108, 047401 (2012)

Graphene Plasmon Waveguiding and Hybridization in Individual and Paired Nanoribbons.
Christensen, J., Manjavacas, A., Thongrattanasiri, S., Koppens, F.H.L. & García de Abajo, F.J.
ACS nano 6, 431-440 (2012)

Graphene Plasmonics: A Platform for Strong Light–Matter Interactions.
Koppens, F.H.L., Chang, D.E. & García de Abajo, F.J.
Nano Lett 11, 3370–3377 (2011)"Hybrid graphene-quantum dot photodetector with ultra-high gain". 

© Frank Koppens 2012