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Ultra-Bright Open Cavity Photon Sources (ULTRA-BRIGHT)

21st national competition for scientific and technical research

New materials: fundamentals and applications

Senior Researcher : Carlos Antón Solanas

Research Centre or Institution : Universidad Autónoma de Madrid.


The expansion and impact of quantum optical technologies depend on the efficiency of generating single photons, as these are the quantum units (qubits) essential for transporting and distributing quantum information.

Solid-state quantum materials allow to emit high-purity single photons on-demand (“one-by-one” and at the push of a button), making them excellent candidates as efficient sources of single photons. Coupling these emitters to a photonic cavity dramatically increases the brightness of the material and improves the quantum properties (purity and indistinguishability) of the emitted photons.

This project pursues for the first time in Spain the development of an ultra-bright source of single photons operating at room and cryogenic temperatures. For this purpose, an optical cavity, coupled to two types of quantum materials, will be implemented. Two main objectives are identified:

- Single photon emission for quantum communications (quantum key distribution) in free space (wavelength in the visible range): coupling of single emitters in hBN to an individual confined photonic mode at room temperature.

- Generation of highly coherent single photons for applications in quantum computing (boson sampling in a fibre-loop): coupling of a quantum dot (InGaAs) to a single confined photonic mode at cryogenic temperature.

As a result of the research along this project, the open-cavity prototype could be patented and be commercialised as an ultra-efficient source of single photons or other quantum states of light.

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