CNT for optical-based quantum cryptography and quantum computing

Researchers at Los Alamos and partners in France and Germany are exploring the enhanced potential of carbon nanotubes as single-photon emitters for quantum information processing.

Nanotubes integrated into electroluminescent devices can provide greater control over timing of light emission and they can be feasibly integrated into photonic structures. They are highlighting the development and photophysical probing of carbon nanotube defect states as routes to room-temperature single photon emitters at telecom wavelengths.

Nature Materials – Carbon nanotubes as emerging quantum-light sources

Progress in quantum computing and quantum cryptography requires efficient, electrically triggered, single-photon sources at room temperature in the telecom wavelengths. It has been long known that semiconducting single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) display strong excitonic binding and emit light over a broad range of wavelengths, but their use has been hampered by a low quantum yield and a high sensitivity to spectral diffusion and blinking. In this Perspective, we discuss recent advances in the mastering of SWCNT optical properties by chemistry, electrical contacting and resonator coupling towards advancing their use as quantum light sources. We describe the latest results in terms of single-photon purity, generation efficiency and indistinguishability. Finally, we consider the main fundamental challenges stemming from the unique properties of SWCNTs and the most promising roads for SWCNT-based chip integrated quantum photonic sources.


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