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      Stopped and stationary light at the single-photon level inside a hollow-core fiber

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          Abstract

          An experimental platform operating at the level of individual quanta is a key requirement for quantum information processing. We report on narrowband light storage and retrieval as well as stationary light for weak coherent light pulses down to the single-photon level based on electromagnetically induced transparency. The experiments were carried out in an ensemble of laser-cooled atoms loaded into a hollow-core photonic crystal fiber to provide strong light-matter coupling, which is an essential requirement for a quantum information platform.

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          Most cited references 12

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          Observation of coherent optical information storage in an atomic medium using halted light pulses.

          Electromagnetically induced transparency is a quantum interference effect that permits the propagation of light through an otherwise opaque atomic medium; a 'coupling' laser is used to create the interference necessary to allow the transmission of resonant pulses from a 'probe' laser. This technique has been used to slow and spatially compress light pulses by seven orders of magnitude, resulting in their complete localization and containment within an atomic cloud. Here we use electromagnetically induced transparency to bring laser pulses to a complete stop in a magnetically trapped, cold cloud of sodium atoms. Within the spatially localized pulse region, the atoms are in a superposition state determined by the amplitudes and phases of the coupling and probe laser fields. Upon sudden turn-off of the coupling laser, the compressed probe pulse is effectively stopped; coherent information initially contained in the laser fields is 'frozen' in the atomic medium for up to 1 ms. The coupling laser is turned back on at a later time and the probe pulse is regenerated: the stored coherence is read out and transferred back into the radiation field. We present a theoretical model that reveals that the system is self-adjusting to minimize dissipative loss during the 'read' and 'write' operations. We anticipate applications of this phenomenon for quantum information processing.
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            Controlling photons using electromagnetically induced transparency.

            It is well known that a dielectric medium can be used to manipulate properties of light pulses. However, optical absorption limits the extent of possible control: this is especially important for weak light pulses. Absorption in an opaque medium can be eliminated via quantum mechanical interference, an effect known as electromagnetically induced transparency. Theoretical and experimental work has demonstrated that this phenomenon can be used to slow down light pulses dramatically, or even bring them to a complete halt. Interactions between photons in such an atomic medium can be many orders of magnitude stronger than in conventional optical materials.
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              Quantum memory for photons: Dark-state polaritons

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                13 June 2019
                Article
                1906.05771

                http://arxiv.org/licenses/nonexclusive-distrib/1.0/

                Custom metadata
                quant-ph physics.optics

                Quantum physics & Field theory, Optical materials & Optics

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