Faculty of Science

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This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2016 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

Monash University

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit

School of Physics and Astronomy


Dr Alexis Bishop



  • First semester 2016 (Day)


This unit provides part of a major in experimental physics. It consists of laboratory work and three 8-lecture sub-units:

  1. Photonics: lasers and coherent light, modulation devices, optical waveguides, interference and holography, fibre optic communications, transmission and coupling to hardware and software devices, applications.
  2. Synchrotron physics: radiation from moving charges and charge distributions, generating a synchrotron beam and enhancing its emission characteristics, experimental areas and beams, detectors and analyser, image formation.
  3. Optics: wave propagation and image formation, plane waves, diffraction, angular spectrum, phase contrast, interferometry, holography, focussed fields and the singularity hierarchy.
  4. Laboratory work: experimental laboratory work on relevant topics.


On completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Describe concepts and perform calculations in Synchrotron Physics, which include the production of synchrotron radiation and x-ray optics, and its application to spectroscopy, imaging, scattering and crystallography;
  2. Describe concepts and perform calculations in Modern Optics, which include vacuum wave equations for the electromagnetic field, Fourier optics, holography, Fresnel and Fraunhofer diffraction;
  3. Describe concepts and perform calculations in Photonics, which include integrated photonics, detectors, waveguides and non-linear optics, with applications to optical communications;
  4. Perform measurements and analysis on experiments that demonstrate the theoretical physics described in this and other physics units;
  5. Produce experimental reports that present results, analyse and discuss the implications and outcomes of experimental work.


Examination (three hours): 46%
Laboratory work: 34%
Assignments: 20%
Students must achieve a pass mark in the practical component to achieve an overall pass grade.

Workload requirements

  • Two 1-hour lectures and one 1-hour tutorial per week
  • An average of two hours in the laboratory per week
  • Seven hours of independent study per week

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study


PHS2011 or PHS2061, and PHS2022 or PHS2062, and MTH2032, and either MTH2010 or MTH2015. Recommended: PHS2081.