Moussa N'Gom

Assistant Professor, Physics, Applied Physics & Astronomy

Following an early career in industry as a Sr. research scientist  working in the fields of ultrafast lasers, optical communications, and materials processing, I joined the Center for Ultrafast Optical Sciences (CUOS) to explore light transmission through highly scattering media through light manipulation or wavefront shaping. This newly emerging field of optical wavefront shaping involves the ability to manipulate light fields both spatially and temporally. It has largely been enabled by the availability of spatial light modulators (SLM). SLMs are used to create arbitrarily complex light fields that are now powerful elements of the optics toolbox. An SLM also provides means to manipulate the fundamental constituents of classical light or single photons, which obey the laws of quantum physics.

In my research, i will be using these new tools to explore novel ways to address topics where conventional optical techniques are hard to apply, such as the control of light propagation in biological tissues, complex photonic structures, plasmonic systems, and multimode fibers.

My research ( will also directly address the core problem of entanglement degradation by developing methods to create and manipulate entangled light fields carrying orbital angular momentum (OAM) and related structured light fields. The light fields are manipulated using wavefront shaping techniques in  waveguide e.g. multimode fibers in order to overcome environment induced destruction of coherence.


Ph.D. in Applied Physics | Advisor: Theodore B. Norris

Thesis: “Novel Approach to the Study of Surface Plasmon Resonance and Field Enhancement Properties of Noble Metal NanostructuresUniversity of Michigan – Ann Arbor


Research Focus
  • Quantum Optics: Experimental and Theoretical understanding of light matter interaction
  • Wavefront Shaping: To modulate coherent transport of light through scattering media
  • Quantum Entanglement: Entangled photons with orbital angular momentum
Select Works
  • “Mode Control in a Multimode Fiber Through Acquiring its Transmission Matrix from a Reference- less Optical System”, M. N’Gom, T. B. Norris, E. Michielssen, and R. R. Nadakuditi Optics Letters, Vol. 43, No. 3, 419 (2018)
  • “Controlling Light Transmission Through Highly Scattering Media Using Semi-Definite Program- ming as a Phase Retrieval Computation Method”, M. N’Gom, M. B. Lien, N. M. Estakhri, T. B. Norris, E. Michielssen, and R. R. Nadakuditi Nat. Sci. Rep. Vol. 7, No. 1, 2518 (2017)
  • “Electron Beam Mapping of Plasmon Resonances of Electromagnetically Coupled Gold Nanorods”, M. N’Gom, S. Li, G. Schatz, R. Erni, A. Agarwal, N. Kotov and T. Norris Physical Review B 80, 113411 (2009)
  • “Exploring the Emerging Frontier at the Intersection of Optics and Electron Microscopy”, M. N’Gom and T. B. Norris, invited article S & T: SPIE Newsroom 10.1117/2.1200901.1493
  • “Single Particle Plasmon Spectroscopy of Silver Nanowires and Gold Nanorods”, M. N’Gom, J.Ringnalda, J. F. Mansfield, A. Agarwal, J. Ye, N. Kotov, N. J. Zaluzec, T. B. Norris. Nanoletters vol. 8, No. 10, 2008, 3200 – 3204.
  • “Relation Between Quantum Tunneling Times for Relativistic Particles”, H. G. Winful, M Ngom, N. Litchinitser, Phys. Rev. A 70, 052112 (2004)
  • “Parameterization of Inclusive Cross Sections from Pion production in Proton-Proton collision”, S. R. Blattnig, S. R. Swaminathan, A. T. Kruger, M. Ngom, and J. W. Norbury Physical Review D. vol 62, pg 094030 (2000)