A quantum optical storage box

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Science  07 Sep 2018:
Vol. 361, Issue 6406, pp. 988-989
DOI: 10.1126/science.361.6406.988-d

The development of information technologies based on quantum optics relies crucially on the ability to generate and propagate single photons in free space or optic fibers over vast distances. However, information processing also requires memory or storage functionality, and the ability to hold on to photons tends to pose a challenge. Seri et al. used femtosecond laser pulses to micromachine waveguides in an optical crystal of Pr3+:Y2SiO5. By identifying irradiation conditions that avoid damage to the crystal, they found that the properties of the waveguide, such as the storage time for single photons, are enhanced. Relatively long storage times, combined with compatibility with other optical processing technologies, could provide a powerful platform for developing complex integrated quantum architectures.

Optica 5, 934 (2018).

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