Second-Year Aulden Jones Selected for International Research Training Experience

Aulden Jones, a second-year physics student at Georgia Tech, has been selected to join the inaugural cohort of students and postdocs for the Summer 2022 International Research and Training Experience (IRTE) in Quantum Materials & Devices at the National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS) in Tsukuba, Japan. The program is part of Global Quantum Leap (GQL), an international consortium funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation to advance nanofabrication infrastructure and quantum technology.

This is the latest in a series of research collaborations Jones has participated in during his time at Georgia Tech. Since 2021, he has worked as an undergraduate research assistant with Associate Professor Martin Mourigal, whose lab focuses on the spectroscopy of quantum materials. In Mourigal’s lab, Jones is studying experimental condensed matter physics and the properties of materials at low temperatures, which are dominated by quantum effects.

“Aulden joined my group during his first semester at Georgia Tech after we met during a talk I gave for new students in the College of Sciences,” said Mourigal. “In a short period, Aulden has developed into a tenacious experimentalist equally at ease with work in the machine shop and more abstract aspects of the quantum theory.”

To build on his work with Mourigal, Jones spent the summer of 2021 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, as a research intern at the Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies (CINT) through Georgia Tech’s alliance with Sandia National Laboratories. While there, he began a project on implementing Electron Spin Resonance (ESR) Spectroscopy at millikelvin temperatures with CINT scientists Michael Lilly and Andy Mounce, which turned into a long-term collaboration between CINT and Georgia Tech.

“ESR is an experimental technique that is widely used throughout chemistry and physics to characterize materials and molecules, but also to study qubits such as nitrogen vacancy (NV) centers in diamonds, which have very fascinating properties and applications in solid-state devices and quantum computing, in addition to other technologies,” Jones explained.

These experiences made Jones a natural candidate for the IRTE in Quantum Materials and Devices. During the program, he will spend 10 weeks completing a structured research project with NIMS Senior Scientist Tokuyuki Teraji.

“My current project has been about developing a compact ESR set-up from the ground up, so this will be a natural follow through, since I’ve now become familiar with the fundamentals of the technique,” he said. “The project I will be working on at NIMS will allow me to now use ESR to study the electron spin of NV centers.”

In addition to building on his past and current research, Jones is also looking forward to learning about research from an international perspective.

“I want to take this opportunity to get a sense for what research is like in the international community. To be a global collaborator and conduct research across cultures,” he said. “Living in Japan will be such a different experience than living in the U.S., but the research process is the same. It will be incredibly exciting to explore the similarities and differences of how things are done while still working in a similar area of research. I want to learn in more ways than one. Not just research and quantum materials, but also learning culturally and as a person in general.”

For additional information on future opportunities offered by GQL, visit

Jones’ work at Georgia Tech has been supported by NSF-DMR-1750186. The Global Quantum Leap program is support by NSF-OISE-2020174.

Information included in this article is accurate as of March 1, 2022 and may change as a result of Covid-19.

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