M2 (PhoCQS) Photonics Complex and Quantum Systems: Foundations and Applications

The cursus Photonics, Complex and Quantum Systems (PhoCQS) offers advanced training in the fields of lasers, photonics, complex systems and quantum systems. As a PhoCQS graduate you will have a deep knowledge of how to generate, manipulate and guide various types of light of how do design laser sources. You will have also a deep knowledge of how nonlinear systems can generate complex behaviors in space and time, with potential disruptive applications and of the cutting edge development in the fields of quantum optics, cold atoms or polaritons. Open to Master 1 in Physics students (or equivalent) either french or foreign students, the cursus is taught in english.

The cursus is composed of 2 options:

  • Complex and Quantum Systems (research cursus),
  • Lasers and Photonic Engineering (engineering cursus).

The first option is a research option that prepares to a PhD and a career in the research and academic sector. The second option prepares to work as engineer in the field of laser and photonics in the industrial sector. However it is also possible to start a PhD after the engineering option.

Depending of the chosen option the academic training is completed by an internship either in a research  lab or in a company specialized in photonics or lasers.

Strength of the training

The cursus is part of the Information and Knowledge Society graduate programme, which gathers expertises needed to build a digital world suitable for Humans. It is also supported by the Excellence center Labex CEMPI, which fosters fundamental and applied research in mathematics and physics, as well as their interactions. Scholarships are available for students with excellent academic records both from IKS graduate programme and CEMPI Labex, as well as relocation grants from IKS graduate programme for foreign students to help them settle in Lille. 

The PhoCQS Master cursus builds on the scientific excellence of the following teams of the Laboratoire de Physique des Lasers, Atomes, Molécules (PhLAM), where in particular research internships are offered:

Training's Organization

Semester 3 (30 ECTS)

  • Optics, photonics and lasers : basic foundations of lasers, non linear optics and photonics, and applications (9 ECTS),
  • Extreme Regimes of Light : Ultrafast optics, extreme wavelength (THz, VUV-X)  (3 ECTS),
  • Advanced photonics : Photonic fibers  (9 ECTS),
  • English/ French as foreign language (3 ECTS).
  • Complex Systems (6 ECTS),
  • Quantum Optics, Cold Atoms, Polaritons (6 ECTS).
  • Laser metrology (3 ECTS),
  • Power lasers and applications (3 ECTS),
  • Advanced optical design (2 ECTS),
  • Lasers in medicine (2 ECTS),
  • Lasers in Physico-chemistry (2 ECTS).

Semester 4 (30 ECTS)

  • Numerical tools (3 ECTS)
  • Experimental tools (3ECTS)
  • Writings skills (research option) / Lab. Project (Engineering option) (3 ECTS)
  • Research internship in Lab (research option) / Internship in industry (Engineering option) (21 ECTS)


For the research option:

This option prepares you for research positions in both academia and industry and, in particular, paves the way for further study at doctoral level:

  • Researcher, research engineer, teacher-researcher after a doctorate.

Former students have found positions in the academic sector (Universities, CNRS), the public sector (CEA, ONERA...), the private sector (Prysmian Group, Alcatel Submarine Network, Cilas subsidiary of MBDA and Safran Electronics & Defense, Alphanov...).

Examples of careers of graduates (option research):

  • Elias Charnay, Ph'D student at PhLAM's laboratory

After following the PhoCQS training, Elias is currently continuing his training with a thesis entitled “Generalized hydrodynamics of optical soliton gases” within the PhLAM laboratory.

After following the SCOL training (which became PhoCQS in 2022), Florent carried out a thesis at PhLAM entitled “Experimental observation of different forms of modulation instability in passive fiber cavities”. He currently holds a position as Assistant Professor at the University of Angers.

After following the SCOL training (which became PhoCQS in 2022), Jean-Baptiste completed a thesis at PhLAM entitled “Slightly multimode erbium-doped fiber amplifiers for future telecommunications networks”. His modeling and numerical calculation work in the context of increasing telecommunications speeds through original modal multiplexing approaches in slightly multimode specialty amplifying fibers allowed him to join the optical fiber modeling team at Prysmian Group , a group in which he currently holds the position of head of the fiber optic preform R&D group.

After following the SCOL training (which became PhoCQS in 2022), Eléonore completed a thesis at PhLAM entitled “Spatio-temporal dynamics of relativistic electron bunches during the microbunching instability: study of the Synchrotron SOLEIL and UVSOR storage rings”. She currently holds a position as CNRS Research Officer and her research activities (for which she obtained the CNRS 2022 Bronze Medal) concern the study of the nonlinear dynamics of relativistic electron bunches in synchrotron radiation centers and free electron lasers, in collaboration with the SOLEIL synchrotron (France) and FERMI (Italy).

Laser and photonics engineering option:

The Master's degree prepares you for a variety of careers in optics, lasers and photonics. Past students have gone on to occupy a wide variety of positions, including:

  • R&D engineer,
  • Senior engineer,
  • Sales engineer,
  • ...

Several graduates of this option have gone on to successfully complete doctoral studies.

Examples of careers of graduates (option Laser & Applications): 

  • Dylan Septier, R&D Engineer, Lightcore Technologies (start-up from the PhLAM, Fresnel and Xlim laboratories): www.linkedin.com/in/dylan-septier-phd-666739150/

Dylan followed the Lasers & Applications option of the SCOL training (which became PhoCQS in 2022) before continuing with a thesis entitled “Hollow double-clad fibers dedicated to non-linear micro-endoscopy” within the PhLAM laboratory. He currently holds a position as an R&D engineer within the Lille unit of the start-up Lightcore Technologies (Cutting-edge nonlinear optical imaging for biomedical and scientific applications).


Testimonials from former graduates

  • Simon Boivinet:R&D engineer, Multitel

During the last year of my professional master's degree, I did not yet know if I wanted to work directly as an engineer or if I wanted to do a thesis in industry. I had the opportunity to find an internship at Multitel (Belgian technical research center) which offered me both after my internship. During the latter, as my work interested me a lot and the team was conducive to research, I headed towards a thesis on the study of fiber lasers in ultra-short pulse regimes. I had a wonderful and fulfilling four years scientifically. With my doctorate in hand, I wanted to travel in order to improve my language skills, so I accepted a position as a product development engineer at NKT photonics (world leader in supercontinuum sources and PCF fibers). Wishing to return to France, I joined ALPhANOV (research center near Bordeaux) as a research engineer on femtosecond fiber lasers. For two years I worked on cutting-edge research themes for French manufacturers. After that, I returned to Multitel (where I still work), as a researcher to work on themes still in the development of innovative fiber lasers.

  • R. Ibrahim:optical/laser engineer, Amplitude

My name is R. Ibrahim, holder of a Master's degree SCOL (Complex Systems, Optics, Lasers) with a specialization in laser engineering and its applications. This program, now named PhoCQS (Photonics, Complex and Quantum Systems), significantly expanded my knowledge by immersing me in the exciting field of photonics, particularly as it relates to pulsed lasers, amplification technologies, and nonlinear optics. My SCOL course has perfectly prepared me to take on professional challenges. My end-of-study internship took place within the company Amplitude, specialized in ultra-fast lasers. Currently, I work as an optical/laser engineer, putting into practice the skills acquired during my career. I am convinced that the SCOL Master offers exceptional opportunities for photonics enthusiasts wishing to flourish in the job market. It is essential to note that this program offers the flexibility to work in both production and research and development. In addition, it offers the opportunity to pursue a CIFRE thesis in collaboration with a company, thus opening the way to a stimulating career in the field of photonics and lasers. I think my own journey is tangible proof of this!

  • M. S.optical/laser engineer, Amplitude

After my Master's degree in Lasers & Applications at the University of Lille, I continued to work within the company Amplitude Laser, where I completed my final internship and which led to the development of a new product. After my internship, I worked on numerous laser systems which allowed me to be versatile and take on several technical challenges. I really applied a large part of the courses taught in this master's degree, in particular Q-switch regimes and nonlinear optics. All this telling me : yes it is concrete. My current job at Amplitude involves participating in the production of a new laser system which delivers a power of 300W and an energy of 3 mJ. I can sometimes carry out the installation at the customer's site, or carry out technical monitoring and process improvement. And frankly it’s a blast: I continue to discover and learn!

Admission & Bourses

For M1

For the start of the 2023 academic year, the process for entering the first year of a master's program is changing. Starting in February 2023, students and returnees will be able to consult the entire range of master's programs via the new platform: https://www.monmaster.gouv.fr/.

The recruitment and application platform will be open from March 1st 2023.  Candidates will be able to submit a maximum of 15 applications by April 3, and will be able to submit a maximum of 15 additional applications for work-study programs.

The timeline below outlines the various key steps that will follow this application process.

Calendar 2023

From March 1 to April 3, 2023

Submission of applications on the new national platform.

April to June 2023

Review of applications by institutions.

From June 19 to July 17, 2023

Transmission of admission proposals to the applicants and response from the applicants.

Until July 20, 2023

Administrative registration with the institutions.

This new national platform is intended for students who hold (or are preparing to hold) a national bachelor's degree or another degree that gives access to the master's program, whether they are French or nationals of the European Economic Area, Andorra, Switzerland or Monaco.

Some applicants will not be concerned by this system:

  • applicants of foreign nationality (excluding nationals of the European Economic Area, Andorra, Switzerland or Monaco) whose country of residence benefits from the Études en France program
  • students repeating their first year of a Master's degree;
  • candidates wishing to be admitted to the first year of a master's program through a validation of higher education (VES) or a validation of professional experience (VAP);

For M2

Opening dates for the different M2 ecandidat application sessions :

  • From 06/03 to 24/04/2023,
  • From 28/08 to 11/09/2023.