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Nat Nanotechnol. 2016 Jun;11(6):539-544. doi: 10.1038/nnano.2015.334. Epub 2016 Feb 8.

A quantum phase switch between a single solid-state spin and a photon.

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Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Institute for Research in Electronics and Applied Physics, Joint Quantum Institute, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland 20742, USA.
Joint Quantum Institute, National Institute of Standards and Technology and University of Maryland, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20899, USA.


Interactions between single spins and photons are essential for quantum networks and distributed quantum computation. Achieving spin-photon interactions in a solid-state device could enable compact chip-integrated quantum circuits operating at gigahertz bandwidths. Many theoretical works have suggested using spins embedded in nanophotonic structures to attain this high-speed interface. These proposals implement a quantum switch where the spin flips the state of the photon and a photon flips the spin state. However, such a switch has not yet been realized using a solid-state spin system. Here, we report an experimental realization of a spin-photon quantum switch using a single solid-state spin embedded in a nanophotonic cavity. We show that the spin state strongly modulates the polarization of a reflected photon, and a single reflected photon coherently rotates the spin state. These strong spin-photon interactions open up a promising direction for solid-state implementations of high-speed quantum networks and on-chip quantum information processors using nanophotonic devices.


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