Rare earth quantum light-matter interfaces (QLMIs) are uniquely suited for various quantum communication applications, including quantum memories and quantum optical to microwave transducers. Among rare earths, erbium QLMIs are particularly appealing due to erbium’s long lived telecom wavelength resonance, allowing integration with existing optical communication technology and infrastructure. Micro-resonator QLMIs have various advantages over bulk rare earth crystal memories. They provide the opportunity for on-chip integration; for example, optical resonators can be integrated with microwave resonators for quantum optical-microwave transduction. For spectral hole-burning based quantum memories, coupling rare earth ions to a resonator can provide improved memory initialization via Purcell enhancement of optical lifetimes, while impedance matching the resonator to the ions can raise the theoretical memory efficiency to 100%.
We present hybrid nanoscale quantum light matter interfaces in the form of amorphous silicon ring resonators on yttrium orthosilicate (YSO) substrate doped with erbium ions. While working with rare earth crystal hosts can be challenging, the fabrication process for these devices is simple and robust, using traditional thin film fabrication technologies. Our devices have measured quality factors of over 105 in the 11 µm diameter rings, and evanescent coupling to an ensemble of erbium ions characterized by a cooperativity of 0.54. We present simulation and experimental results of the optical properties of these cavities, and their coupling to erbium ions, including a demonstration of Purcell enhancement of the erbium telecom transition. We then analyze their potential as quantum memories and in optical to microwave transducers.