Programme outline

The “Master Programme in Advanced Optical Technologies” (MAOT) provides in-depth training in the fundamentals and applications of state-of-the-art optical technologies. The programme is highly interdisciplinary and brings together experts and knowledge from the fields of Engineering, Physics, Computer Science and Medicine. At MAOT students get this expertise from across the university in one integrated programme − practically unique in the field of optical technologies.


MAOT teaches applications of optical technologies in seven main topics:

Light is an excellent tool for gaining remote information without any contact to the object. Besides their contactless mode of operation, optical measuring techniques owe their rapid spread into technology and science to their measuring accuracy and their high spatial and temporal resolution.

Light as a tool has revolutionised industrial manufacturing. Within the last decade the laser in particular has changed automotive construction, micro- and nanotechnology. It has nearly replaced traditional manufacturing methods such as spot welding and has become a standard tool. The rapid progress experienced in computer technology has only been possible thanks to modern optical technologies.

Laser and optical technology in general are an essential part of diagnostics and therapy in modern medicine. In order to understand the interaction between light and biological tissue it is necessary to have fundamental knowledge of both.

Optical communication system technology is one of the most rapidly evolving fields pushed by an ever-increasing demand for higher data transport capacity and longer transmission length. From these demands many exciting challenges for the development of the next generation of optical networks arise. The module Optics in Communication and IT provides the knowledge required to face these challenges.

Novel optical materials and efficient light sources provide the basis for optical systems design. Tailor-made optical materials and elements with engineered optical functionality have benefited from the technological progress in micro- and nanostructuring.

Numerical simulations and computer-based techniques are an essential tool in optical technologies. The vast field of applications includes image-based modelling and rendering, multi-dimensional data visualisation, computer vision as well as simulation and optimisation of optical systems, lasers or optical fields in nanostructures. The dramatically increased power of today’s computer systems makes it possible to solve tasks that only few years ago seemed unfeasible. The module Computational Optics provides the basic knowledge necessary for the generation and implementation of such computer-based methods and simulations.

The learning outcome of the major topic Physics of light is for students to acquire knowledge in the physics on which optical technologies are based going beyond the foundation modules (geometrical optics, wave optics, Fourier optics, quantum optics).



  • The first semester’s courses teach the fundamentals of optics and basics of the laser and ensure a homogenous knowledge base of all students.
  • For the second and third semester students choose two of seven possible topics as major topics:
    • In the first major they study at least four courses (20 ECTS)
    • In the second major they study at least three courses (15 ECTS)
    • Two further courses (10 ECTS) can be taken from any topic
    • A lab course in both of the majors, a research project (300 h) and an internship (5 weeks) supplement the education in the second and third semester
  • The fourth semester is dedicated to the master’s thesis (30 ECTS or 900 h). Students find a subject and a supervisor for the thesis during the second or third semester.



Addition informations