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Title: Towards storage and retrieval of non-classical light in a broadband quantum memory : an investigation of free-space and cavity Raman memories
Author: Champion, Theresa Fiona Maya
ISNI:       0000 0004 6061 5058
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2015
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Photonic quantum information processing has emerged as a powerful platform for realising quantum-enhanced technologies. In order to be scalable, many of these technologies depend on the availability of a suitable quantum memory for the coherent storage and on-demand retrieval of photonic quantum states. In this thesis, I investigate broadband light storage in a room-temperature Raman memory, implemented both in free space and, for the first time, inside a low-finesse optical cavity designed for low-noise operation. The ability of the Raman memory to preserve phase coherence was tested by storing coherent polarisation states in two spatially separate atomic ensembles. Polarisation storage with a fidelity of up to 97 ± 1% was demonstrated by performing full process tomography on the system. The Raman memory was then interfaced for the first time with a spontaneous parametric downconversion (SPDC) source of heralded, GHz-bandwidth single photons. The memory performance was characterised by measuring the second-order autocorrelation of the retrieved fields. While the SPDC input photon statistics showed a clear influence on the statistics of the retrieved field, four-wave mixing (FWM) noise, stimulated by spontaneous Raman scattering, prevented the preservation of non-classical photon statistics during read-out. Suppressing this source of noise represents the last remaining challenge for realising a broadband single-photon Raman memory suitable for quantum information applications. To this end, I demonstrate a novel cavity implementation of the Raman memory which reduces the FWM contribution relative to the signal field by re-distributing the density of states into which the noise photons can be scattered. Cavity-enhanced memory operation was investigated using weak coherent input states, showing a significant improvement of the signal-to-noise ratio compared to the free-space memory implementation. This proof-of-principle demonstration suggests that cavity Raman memories may offer a practical route towards low-noise, high-bandwidth quantum storage at room temperature.
Supervisor: Walmsley, Ian Sponsor: European Commission
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Physics ; Quantum optics--Experiments ; Temporal multiplexing for photonic quantum information processing ; Quantum memory