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Bandwidth manipulation of quantum light by an electro-optic time lens


The ability to manipulate the spectral-temporal waveform of optical pulses has enabled a wide range of applications from ultrafast spectroscopy1 to high-speed communications2. Extending these concepts to quantum light has the potential to enable breakthroughs in optical quantum science and technology3,4,5. However, filtering and amplifying often employed in classical pulse shaping techniques are incompatible with non-classical light. Controlling the pulsed mode structure of quantum light requires efficient means to achieve deterministic, unitary manipulation that preserves fragile quantum coherences. Here, we demonstrate an electro-optic method for modifying the spectrum of non-classical light by employing a time lens6,7,8. In particular, we show highly efficient, wavelength-preserving, sixfold compression of single-photon spectral intensity bandwidth, enabling over a twofold increase of single-photon flux into a spectrally narrowband absorber. These results pave the way towards spectral-temporal photonic quantum information processing and facilitate interfacing of different physical platforms9,10,11 where quantum information can be stored12 or manipulated13.

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Figure 1: Conceptual scheme of electro-optic bandwidth compression.
Figure 2: Experimental set-up.
Figure 3: Spectral manipulation of single-photon wavepackets.
Figure 4: Performance of the bandwidth compressor.

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We acknowledge insightful comments and discussion about the work with K. Banaszek, C. Becher, A. O. C. Davis, E. Figueroa, D. Gauthier, X. Ma, C. Silberhorn, V. Torres-Company, N. Treps and I. A. Walmsley. This project has received funding from the European Community (EC) Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement no. 665148. M.K. was partially supported by a Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowship no. 301032 within the EC 7th Framework Programme and by the National Science Centre of Poland project no. 2014/15/D/ST2/02385. M.J. was supported by the PhoQuS@UW project within the EC 7th Framework Programme (grant agreement no. 316244).

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Authors and Affiliations



M.K. and B.J.S. conceived the project. M.K. and M.J. designed and performed the experiment. M.J. analysed the data with input from M.K. L.J.W. developed the RF phase-locking system and contributed to the early stages of the experiment. M.K., M.J. and B.J.S. wrote the manuscript. M.J. prepared the figures.

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Correspondence to Michał Jachura.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

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Karpiński, M., Jachura, M., Wright, L. et al. Bandwidth manipulation of quantum light by an electro-optic time lens. Nature Photon 11, 53–57 (2017).

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