Picosecond Coherent Optical Manipulation of a Single Electron Spin in a Quantum Dot

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Science  18 Apr 2008:
Vol. 320, Issue 5874, pp. 349-352
DOI: 10.1126/science.1154798

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Most schemes for quantum information processing require fast single-qubit operations. For spin-based qubits, this involves performing arbitrary coherent rotations of the spin state on time scales much faster than the spin coherence time. By applying off-resonant, picosecond-scale optical pulses, we demonstrated the coherent rotation of a single electron spin through arbitrary angles up to π radians. We directly observed this spin manipulation using time-resolved Kerr rotation spectroscopy and found that the results are well described by a model that includes the electronnuclear spin interaction. Measurements of the spin rotation as a function of laser detuning and intensity confirmed that the optical Stark effect is the operative mechanism.

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