Fast, noise-free memory for photon synchronization at room temperature

E. Poem, R. Finkelstein, O. Michel, O. Lahad, O. Firstenberg

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


Future quantum photonic networks require coherent optical memories, preferably operating at room temperature, for synchronizing quantum sources and gates of probabilistic nature. Until now, however, room-temperature atomic memories have suffered from an intrinsic read-out noise. Here we demonstrate a fast ladder memory (FLAME) mapping the optical field onto the superposition between electronic orbitals of rubidium vapor. Employing a ladder level-system of orbital transitions with nearly degenerate frequencies simultaneously enables high bandwidth, low noise, and long memory lifetime. We store and retrieve 1.7-ns-long pulses, containing 0.5 photons on average, and observe short-time external efficiency of 25%, memory lifetime (1/e) of 86 ns, and below 10 -4 added noise photons. Consequently, coupling this memory to a probabilistic source would enhance the on-demand photon generation probability by a factor of 12, the highest number yet reported for a noise-free, room-temperature memory. This paves the way towards the controlled production of large quantum states of light from probabilistic photon sources.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationQuantum Communications and Quantum Imaging XVI
EditorsRonald E. Meyers, Yanhua Shih, Keith S. Deacon
ISBN (Electronic)9781510621138
StatePublished - 2018
EventQuantum Communications and Quantum Imaging XVI 2018 - San Diego, United States
Duration: 19 Aug 201820 Aug 2018

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering


ConferenceQuantum Communications and Quantum Imaging XVI 2018
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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