Lasers for Quantum Photonics
Lasers as Pump Sources for Single-photon or Photon Pair Emitters
Single-photon emitters, as needed e.g. in quantum communications, are generally no lasers (even when containing a light emitter in an optical resonator). However, some of them (e.g. based on quantum dots) require a pulsed laser (e.g. a picosecond laser) as a pump source. Such a laser must provide a short light pulse with low pulse energy, preferably with a reasonable efficiency, i.e., with very low power consumption, and high beam quality. Often it also needs to emit in a special wavelength range. Laser diodes are frequently used.
For the generation of entangled photon pairs in nonlinear crystal materials, one also requires a pump laser. The demands can be very different depending on the concrete case, for example concerning pulsed or continuous-wave operation, optical power or pulse energy, emission wavelength, etc. Frequently, a short emission wavelength, a narrow linewidth and a high beam quality are required.
Lasers for Manipulating and Readout of Quantum Bits
Quantum bits (qbits) are often manipulated (e.g. initialized) and/or read with laser pulses. Essential requirements for the laser are usually a special emission wavelength and a small linewidth, as well as precise control of the timing and energy of the pulses.
Lasers for Trapping and Cooling of Atoms and Ions
Lasers are used for optical traps, capturing multiple atoms or ions, or sometimes a single atom or ion. Such atoms or ions can be used to represent quantum states. This often requires continuous wave operation of the laser(s) at a specific wavelength and with a low linewidth. Depending on the circumstances, the required optical power can be considerable.
Spectroscopy in Quantum Sensing and Metrology
Ultra-stable lasers with very low laser noise, a narrow linewidth, and possibly some wavelength tuning are used for precision spectroscopy in quantum sensing devices, where photon entanglement, single photons, or squeezed states of light are used for extremely precise measurements.
Some typical requirements for such lasers, as already mentioned above, are:
- special emission wavelengths, which are often not accessible by common laser gain media
- narrow linewidth
- very low laser noise and high beam quality
Arche is the world's most cost-effective femtosecond laser. A suite of ultrafast fiber lasers with 100 MHz range repetition rates, centered at 1560 nm, delivering < 500 fs. Arche is a workhorse tool for many research and industrial applications requiring reliability and affordability.
TOPTICA's products provide an ultra-broad laser wavelength coverage: 190 nm – 0.1 THz (corresponding to 3 mm). They enable a big variety of demanding applications in quantum optics, spectroscopy, biophotonics, microscopy, test & measurement, as well as materials inspection.
all wavelengths. From 190 nm to 0.1 THz
The realization of quantum-sensor based experimental setups and products relies on the availability of state-of-the art components like specialized diamond tips, fast low-noise electronics, and high-performance lasers. At HÜBNER Photonics we offer the following lasers targeted at quantum applications:
- The Cobolt 06-01 Series contains lasers over a large wavelength range in a compact plug and play format. The Series consists of high-performance fixed wavelength diode laser modules (MLD) and diode-pumped lasers (DPL). High speed direct modulation capability and true off during modulation make them ideal for applications in bioimaging and quantum technologies.
- The C-WAVE is also used to test the quality of artificially grown structures with color centers designed for quantum applications. Key characteristics of the C-WAVE are the wide spectral coverage in the visible and NIR (450 nm – 3.5 µm), narrow linewidth (< 1 MHz), mode-hop-free tunability, high output power of several hundred milliwatts, and its nearly perfect Gaussian beam profile.
We offer a 405 nm single longitudinal mode (SLM) diode laser, purpose-built for the demanding realm of quantum cryptography. Its output power reaching 100 mW, exceptional coherence and minimal linewidth make it a vital tool. Its applications extend to quantum imaging for cancer cells diagnostic, quantum key distribution systems, quantum encryption networks, and quantum communication protocols, all of which rely on its precision and stability to safeguard sensitive data against potential threats. These features make it an ideal choice for quantum key distribution and secure data transmission in quantum encryption systems, ensuring the utmost data security in a straightforward and practical manner. Another popular wavelength for quantum applications – 785 nm, – can also be offered in various configurations suitable for quantum cryptography.
On request, Integrated Optics manufacture single fibers with Bi-end-caps in custom lengths for quantum customers to avoid burned fiber tips in the UV range.
See also: quantum photonics
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