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Photonic quantum Hall effect and multiplexed light sources of large orbital angular momenta


The quantum Hall effect involves electrons confined to a two-dimensional plane subject to a perpendicular magnetic field, but it also has a photonic analogue1,2,3,4,5,6. Using heterostructures based on structured semiconductors on a magnetic substrate, we introduce compact and integrated coherent light sources of large orbital angular momenta7 based on the photonic quantum Hall effect1,2,3,4,5,6. The photonic quantum Hall effect enables the direct and integrated generation of coherent orbital angular momenta beams of large quantum numbers from light travelling in leaky circular orbits at the interface between two topologically dissimilar photonic structures. Our work gives direct access to the infinite number of orbital angular momenta basis elements and will thus enable multiplexed quantum light sources for communication and imaging applications.

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Fig. 1: Photonic QH rings and integrated OAM of large quantum numbers.
Fig. 2: Simulation, fabrication and luminescence of photonic QH rings.
Fig. 3: Lasing characteristics and photon statistics of photonic QH rings.
Fig. 4: Far-field interference pattern of beams emitted from photonic QH ring lasers.

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Data availability

The data that support the plots within this paper and other findings of this study are available from the corresponding author upon reasonable request.

Code availability

The computer codes that support the plots within this paper and other findings of this study are available from the corresponding author upon reasonable request.


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This research was mostly supported by the Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award (N00014-17-1-2671), the ONR JTO MRI Award (N00014-17-1-2442), the National Science Foundation Career Award (ECCS-1554021) and the Laboratory Directed Research and Development Program of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory under US Department of Energy contract no. DE-AC02-05CH11231. The work was partially supported by the Moore Inventor Fellows program, the DARPA DSO-NLM Program HR00111820038 and the NSF QLCI programme through grant number OMA-2016245. The work was performed in part at the San Diego Nanotechnology Infrastructure, a member of the National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure, which is supported by the National Science Foundation (ECCS-1542148). We thank M. Montero for technical assistance regarding fabrication.

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Authors and Affiliations



B.K. conceived the project and guided the theoretical and experimental investigations. B.B. fabricated the samples. B.B. and L.H. performed the simulations. B.B., S.H.P., D.P., A.N. and A.E.A. performed the measurements. B.K. and Y.F. supervised the research. All the authors contributed to discussions and manuscript writing.

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Correspondence to Boubacar Kanté.

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The authors declare no competing interests.

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Peer review information Nature Physics thanks Ren-Min Ma, Lorenzo Marrucci and the other, anonymous, reviewer(s) for their contribution to the peer review of this work.

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Supplementary Figs. 1–12 and discussion.

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Bahari, B., Hsu, L., Pan, S.H. et al. Photonic quantum Hall effect and multiplexed light sources of large orbital angular momenta. Nat. Phys. 17, 700–703 (2021).

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