The reversible mapping of quantum states of light in cryogenically cooled rare earth doped crystals, represents one of the most promising routes towards the realization of efficient and high fidelity quantum memories. The miniaturization of these devices in robust and monolithic integrated-optics platforms would be beneficial both in terms of experimental scalability and of enhanced light-matter interaction, arising from the waveguide field confinement.
Here, for the first time, we fabricate single mode channel waveguides for visible light at 606 nm in a Praseodymium-doped Yttrium Orthosilicate crystal, which is one of the most employed materials for light storage experiments, thanks to its excellent coherence properties. For the waveguide fabrication, we use the direct technique called femtosecond laser micromachining, in which a femtosecond laser beam is focused inside the crystal volume, and produces a permanent and very localized material modification. In particular, we fabricate the waveguide cladding by inscribing a pair of parallel damage tracks which confine light in the in-between region. With this approach, the waveguide core is not directly exposed to the laser irradiation and consequently its bulk properties result only marginally affected. Measurements of the optical coherence time in waveguide gave results comparable to those obtained in a bulk sample and this confirms that the fabrication procedure does not affect the coherence of the active ions. We performed the storage and the on-demand recall of bright coherent pulses in waveguide, using the atomic frequency comb (AFC) protocol extended to the ground state.
Giacomo Corrielli, Alessandro Seri, Margherita Mazzera, Roberto Osellame, and Hugues de Riedmatten, "Laser-written waveguides in rare-earth-doped crystal for integrated optical memory applications (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10118, Advances in Photonics of Quantum Computing, Memory, and Communication X, 101180R (Presented at SPIE OPTO: February 02, 2017; Published: 2 June 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2251441.5397361507001.
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