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Photon Bursts Boost Quantum-Sensor Performance

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A common solid-state quantum-sensor platform consists of microscopic artificial diamonds with defects within them, in which a carbon atom is replaced with a nitrogen atom and the adjacent carbon atom is missing.

Credit: Alfred Pasieka/Science Source

The University of Chicago's Aashish Clerk and colleagues found a seemingly unwanted quantum effect may help improve the sensitivity of quantum sensors by up to 100-fold.

The hundreds or thousands of quantum bits (qubits) contained in solid-state quantum sensors may collectively emit a burst of photons, injecting noise into quantum sensing.

"As each single qubit decays from 1 to 0, it gives a little kick to all the other undecayed qubits, which remain in a superposition state," Clerk said.

The researchers learned that allowing superradiant decay to occur for a limited interval could leave half the qubits intact while substantially amplifying their signals.

They suggested pairing a microwave or mechanical resonator to the qubits in a nitrogen vacancy-center quantum sensor could facilitate a superradiant amplification step before readout, amplifying device sensitivity.

From IEEE Spectrum
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Abstracts Copyright © 2022 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA


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