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Volume 594 Issue 7861, 3 June 2021

Quantum connections

The ability of quantum networks to distribute and store entanglement at remote, interconnected nodes would enable applications such as quantum communication, quantum sensing or distributed quantum computation. In this week’s issue, Hugues de Riedmatten and his colleagues present heralded entanglement between two remote solid-state quantum memories. The entanglement is heralded by detection of a photon in between the two memories and is stored in the memory crystals for up to 25 microseconds. Moreover, the set-up uses photons with a wavelength suitable for fibre-optic telecom networks, which offers the possibility of operating quantum networks and quantum repeaters with existing telecommunications infrastructure. The cover image offers an artistic interpretation of the system. The two crystals are connected to a telecommunications fibre-optic network and the photon heralding the entanglement (at the centre) generates the two possibilities, represented as mirror images on top of each other, of one of either of the crystals being in an excited state. In related work in this issue, Chuan-Feng Li and his co-workers present heralded two-photon entanglement between two quantum memories 3.5 metres apart.

Cover image: ICFO/H. Ritsch.

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