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Title: Quantum properties of plasmonic waveguides
Author: Dieleman, Frederik
ISNI:       0000 0004 6421 2301
Awarding Body: Imperial College London
Current Institution: Imperial College London
Date of Award: 2017
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This thesis investigates properties of quantum states of light while travelling as surface plasmon polaritons in plasmonic waveguides and structures. The bosonic nature of SPPs has been shown in previous work by performing a Hong-Ou-Mandel interference experiment with a plasmonic scattering-based beam splitter. Here, we show the same interference with a higher statistical power thanks to an improved set-up. A visibility of 59 ± 1 % is obtained in the two-photon interference, clearly breaking the classical limit of 50 %. The importance of the phase-relations between the different modes in the beam splitter is experimentally probed. The output state of the interference is then further analyzed by a quantum state tomography set-up. This makes it possible to quantify the entanglement generated in the interference. As the interference happens in the plasmonic beam splitter, this shows, to our knowledge for the first time, entanglement generated in a plasmonic structure. Together with the recent results in terms of entanglement and coherence preservation of SPPs, this clearly shows the potential of quantum plasmonic devices. To move into the realm of applications, we also investigate theoretically the enhancements in sensitivity quantum states of light can deliver for plasmonic sensing. It is shown that despite the losses, quantum metrology techniques can be useful in an interferometer with plasmonic waveguides. Considering the strengths and successes of plasmonic sensing techniques in a wide range of fields, we envision that entangled and squeezed states of light will become a new route to push the limits in sensitivity.
Supervisor: Maier, Stefan ; Kim, Myungshik Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral