John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences Harvard University
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We demonstrate a new approach to supercontinuum generation and carrier-envelope-offset detection in dispersion-engineered nanophotonic waveguides based on saturated second-harmonic generation of femtosecond pulses. In contrast with traditional approaches based on self-phase modulation, this technique simultaneously broadens both harmonics by generating rapid amplitude modulations of the field envelopes. The generated supercontinuum produces coherent carrier-envelope-offset beatnotes in the overlap region that remain in phase across 100’s of nanometers of bandwidth while requiring <10 picojoules of pulse energy.
H. Atikian, N. Sinclair, P. Latawiec, X. Xiong, S. Meesala, S. Gauthier, D. Wintz, J. Randi, D. Bernot, S. DeFrances, J. Thomas, M. Roman, S. Durrant, F. Capasso, and M. Loncar. Submitted. “Diamond mirrors for high-power lasers.” arXiv:1909.06458.[PDF]
A high-resolution broad-spectral-bandwidth spectrometer on a chip would create new opportunities for gas-phase molecular fingerprinting, especially in environmental sensing. A resolution high enough to observe transitions at atmospheric pressure and the simultaneous sensitive detection of multiple atoms or molecules are the key challenges. Here, an electro-optic microring-based dualcomb interferometer, fabricated on a low-loss lithium-niobate-on-insulator nanophotonic platform, demonstrates significant progress towards such an achievement. Spectra spanning 1.6 THz (53 cm-1) at a resolution of 10 GHz (0.33 cm-1) are obtained in a single measurement without requiring frequency scanning or moving parts. The frequency agility of the system enables spectrally-tailored multiplexed sensing, which allows for interrogation of non-adjacent spectral regions, here separated by 6.6 THz (220 cm-1), without compromising the signal-to-noise ratio.
Lithium niobate (LN), an outstanding and versatile material, has influenced our daily life for decades: from enabling high-speed optical communications that form the backbone of the Internet to realizing radio-frequency filtering used in our cell phones. This half-century-old material is currently embracing a revolution in thin-film LN integrated photonics. The successes of manufacturing wafer-scale, high-quality, thin films of LN on insulator (LNOI) and breakthroughs in nanofabrication techniques have made high-performance integrated nanophotonic components possible. With rapid development in the past few years, some of these thin-film LN devices, such as optical modulators and nonlinear wavelength converters, have already outperformed their legacy counterparts realized in bulk LN crystals. Furthermore, the nanophotonic integration enabled ultra-low-loss resonators in LN, which unlocked many novel applications such as optical frequency combs and quantum transducers. In this Review, we cover -- from basic principles to the state of the art -- the diverse aspects of integrated thin-film LN photonics, including the materials, basic passive components, and various active devices based on electro-optics, all-optical nonlinearities, and acousto-optics. We also identify challenges that this platform is currently facing and point out future opportunities. The field of integrated LNOI photonics is advancing rapidly and poised to make critical impacts on a broad range of applications in communication, signal processing, and quantum information.
Electro-optic modulators (EOMs) convert signals from the electrical to the optical domain. They are at the heart of optical communication, microwave signal processing, sensing, and quantum technologies. Next-generation EOMs require high-density integration, low cost, and high performance simultaneously, which are difficult to achieve with established integrated photonics platforms. Thin-film lithium niobate (LN) has recently emerged as a strong contender owing to its high intrinsic electro-optic (EO) efficiency, industry-proven performance, robustness, and, importantly, the rapid development of scalable fabrication techniques. The thin-film LN platform inherits nearly all the material advantages from the legacy bulk LN devices and amplifies them with a smaller footprint, wider bandwidths, and lower power consumption. Since the first adoption of commercial thin-film LN wafers only a few years ago, the overall performance of thin-film LN modulators is already comparable with, if not exceeding, the performance of the best alternatives based on mature platforms such as silicon and indium phosphide, which have benefited from many decades of research and development. In this mini-review, we explain the principles and technical advances that have enabled state-of-the-art LN modulator demonstrations. We discuss several approaches, their advantages and challenges. We also outline the paths to follow if LN modulators are to improve further, and we provide a perspective on what we believe their performance could become in the future. Finally, as the integrated LN modulator is a key subcomponent of more complex photonic functionalities, we look forward to exciting opportunities for larger-scale LN EO circuits beyond single components.
David Awschalom, Karl K. Berggren, Hannes Bernien, Sunil Bhave, Lincoln D. Carr, Paul Davids, Sophia E. Economou, Dirk Englund, Andrei Faraon, Marty Fejer, Saikat Guha, Martin V. Gustafsson, Evelyn Hu, Liang Jiang, Jungsang Kim, Boris Korzh, Prem Kumar, Paul G. Kwiat, Marko Lončar, Mikhail D. Lukin, David A. B. Miller, Christopher Monroe, Sae Woo Nam, Prineha Narang, Jason S. Orcutt, Michael G. Raymer, Amir H. Safavi-Naeini, Maria Spiropulu, Kartik Srinivasan, Shuo Sun, Jelena Vučković, Edo Waks, Ronald Walsworth, Andrew M. Weiner, and Zheshen Zhang. 2/24/2021. “Development of Quantum InterConnects (QuICs) for Next-Generation Information Technologies.” PRX Quantum, 2, Pp. 017002. Publisher's VersionAbstract
Just as “classical” information technology rests on a foundation built of interconnected information-processing systems, quantum information technology (QIT) must do the same. A critical component of such systems is the “interconnect,” a device or process that allows transfer of information between disparate physical media, for example, semiconductor electronics, individual atoms, light pulses in optical fiber, or microwave fields. While interconnects have been well engineered for decades in the realm of classical information technology, quantum interconnects (QuICs) present special challenges, as they must allow the transfer of fragile quantum states between different physical parts or degrees of freedom of the system. The diversity of QIT platforms (superconducting, atomic, solid-state color center, optical, etc.) that will form a “quantum internet” poses additional challenges. As quantum systems scale to larger size, the quantum interconnect bottleneck is imminent, and is emerging as a grand challenge for QIT. For these reasons, it is the position of the community represented by participants of the NSF workshop on “Quantum Interconnects” that accelerating QuIC research is crucial for sustained development of a national quantum science and technology program. Given the diversity of QIT platforms, materials used, applications, and infrastructure required, a convergent research program including partnership between academia, industry, and national laboratories is required.