Physics

Entangling Spin and Light

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Science  03 May 2013:
Vol. 340, Issue 6132, pp. 526-527
DOI: 10.1126/science.340.6132.526-d

There are several different approaches to quantum information processing currently under development, including (but not exhaustively) superconducting circuits, nitrogen vacancy defects in diamond, and semiconductor quantum dots. Each one relies on the basic building block of a qubit, a two-level quantum system, on which the information can be stored and manipulated. In the semiconductor quantum dot approach, manipulating the spin of a single electron is promising because it has all the requirements: being fast, controllable and stable. A downside, however, has been the issue of scalability. Any useful quantum processor will require a system of many qubits, but getting quantum dots to talk to each other has presented a challenge. Addressing a preliminary point of this issue, Schaibley et al. show that the light (a single photon) emitted from the excited state of a charged quantum dot is entangled with the spin of the electron on the dot. The authors argue that by making the single photons emitted from other distinct quantum dots interact, it may be possible to then entangle the spins on these quantum dots and thus realize a scalable architecture.

Phys. Rev. Lett. 110, 167401 (2013).

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