With the aim of fostering collaborative work between SEAS and FAS researchers, the Harvard Quantum Optics Center, with additional funding from SEAS, will provide direct funding of SEAS/FAS collaborative research projects. Qualified research projects will be in the field of Quantum Optics, broadly defined, and must involve the direct participation of at least one Faculty member from SEAS and one Faculty member from FAS. (For more information on HQOC research, see Research.) Applications must be prepared and submitted jointly from the participating faculty members. Funding granted for the 2014-15 academic year begins 1 July 2014 and ends 30 June 2015. Support is for one “senior” graduate student plus $20,000 in unrestricted funds, which must be used in direct support of the project on which the supported graduate student works. The supported graduate student must have passed their oral exam in order to receive support and would be designated as an HQOC Graduate Fellow. Exceptional cases for support of research outside these guidelines will be considered with prior approval of the Director of the HQOC. Acceptable applications will be no longer than 5 pages in length, 11 pt (or larger) font size, double spaced, plus two relevant publications. Funding decisions are made by the HQOC Outside Advisory Council. Applications are due 28 May 2014, and should be sent to Joan Hamilton at hamilton@physics.harvard.edu.

Current and Former SEAS-FAS Research Support Recipients are below, Graduate Students followed by PIs.

NameResearch Description
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Christopher Evans

now Kavli Postdoc in Suntivich Group, Cornell

Entangled photon sources are a key resource for quantum information processing circuits, however current technology is not readily integrated onto photonic chips. To address this challenge, we are exploring spontaneous nonlinear optical interactions in nanometer-scale TiO2 waveguides. Our waveguides can generate entangled photons from the visible to the near infrared...

Entangled photon sources are a key resource for quantum information processing circuits, however current technology is not readily integrated onto photonic chips. To address this challenge, we are exploring spontaneous nonlinear optical interactions in nanometer-scale TiO2 waveguides. Our waveguides can generate entangled photons from the visible to the near infrared. These photons are directly generated on-chip and can be processed using standard waveguide components, all within the same material. By combining photon sources with quantum circuitry using scalable lithographic methods, we anticipate that TiO2 will play an important role in future quantum technology.

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Stephanie Valleau

Graduate Student

My research focuses on the theoretical investigation of exciton dynamics in natural and synthetic aggregates. In particular I am interested in understanding the basic physical principles which determine exciton transport in different types of structures and in studying how these materials can be coupled to optical devices, for example microcavities, to enhance transport...

My research focuses on the theoretical investigation of exciton dynamics in natural and synthetic aggregates. In particular I am interested in understanding the basic physical principles which determine exciton transport in different types of structures and in studying how these materials can be coupled to optical devices, for example microcavities, to enhance transport.

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Birgit Hausmann

Graduate Student

Diamond photonics recently evolved from bulk to integrated devices on chip. With these devices at hand, strong light-matter interactions can be achieved in the sense of dipole cavity interactions or nonlinear responses of diamond. My research interest during my P.h.D. lies in leveraging these devices to control and enhance the single photon emission from NV centers...

Diamond photonics recently evolved from bulk to integrated devices on chip. With these devices at hand, strong light-matter interactions can be achieved in the sense of dipole cavity interactions or nonlinear responses of diamond. My research interest during my P.h.D. lies in leveraging these devices to control and enhance the single photon emission from NV centers. In addition I am interested to experiment on nonlinear optical processes such as four wave mixing.

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Wenqi Zhu

Wenqi Zhu

Graduate Student

My PhD work is focused on the mechanism and applications of surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS). Raman scattering is associated with the vibrational modes of molecules. Through SERS, the Raman cross-section of molecules adsorbed to nanostructures can be increased by orders of magnitude...

My PhD work is focused on the mechanism and applications of surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS). Raman scattering is associated with the vibrational modes of molecules. Through SERS, the Raman cross-section of molecules adsorbed to nanostructures can be increased by orders of magnitude. It takes advantage of the fact that the metallic nanostructure enhances both the excitation and emission processes. My efforts have been on to design and fabricate nanostructures that could maximize the enhancement in both ways. For the excitation process, I have developed a lithographic fabrication technique that enables fabrication of arrays of metallic dimer structure with gap size well below 5 nm. Through the excitation of localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR), this structure could concentrate substantial electromagnetic field into the gap region. For the emission process, I have been working on the collimation of the emission from Raman molecule. This can be achieved by Yagi-Uda optical antennas, which is an nanoscale analogy of radiofrequency Yagi-Uda antennas.

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Yiwen Chu

now Postdoc in Schoelkopf Lab, Yale

My PhD was focused on using the optical properties of nitrogen vacancy (NV) centers in diamond for quantum information and nanoscale photonics. Using the NV center as a unique, solid-state interface between light and matter, I worked on demonstrations of spin-photon entanglement and optical manipulation of nuclear spins...

My PhD was focused on using the optical properties of nitrogen vacancy (NV) centers in diamond for quantum information and nanoscale photonics. Using the NV center as a unique, solid-state interface between light and matter, I worked on demonstrations of spin-photon entanglement and optical manipulation of nuclear spins. More recently, my research has focused on incorporating NV centers into photonic crystal cavities to enable stronger light-matter interactions, which are crucial for applications such as scalable quantum networks and photonic devices. This work involved developing techniques for fabricating diamond based nanostructures, along with understanding and controlling the optical properties of NV centers inside such structures.

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Michael Moebius

Graduate Student

Efficient entangled photon sources on an integrated photonic platform are a promising technology for quantum information applications. To address challenges in efficiency and scaleability of state-of-the-art technology, we investigate spontaneous nonlinear optical interactions in TiO2 integrated photonic circuits to generate entangled photons on-chip...

Efficient entangled photon sources on an integrated photonic platform are a promising technology for quantum information applications. To address challenges in efficiency and scaleability of state-of-the-art technology, we investigate spontaneous nonlinear optical interactions in TiO2 integrated photonic circuits to generate entangled photons on-chip. Waveguide components can be designed to manipulate these entangled states. We have demonstrated spectral broadening and third-harmonic generation of green light from a pulsed pump at 1550 nm, confirming that TiO2 is a highly nonlinear optical material and a useful platform across the visible and near infrared. By combining photonic circuits fabricated by scalable lithographic methods with entangled photon sources on-chip, we anticipate that TiO2 will become an important platform for quantum information applications.

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Michael J. Burek

Graduate Student

Recent decades have seen tremendous advances in our ability to prepare and control solid state atom-like systems and optical fields in microcavities. However, efficient quantum information processing still faces the significant challenge of integrating a range of highly dissimilar physical systems to realize elements for logic, memory, and long-range coupling...

Recent decades have seen tremendous advances in our ability to prepare and control solid state atom-like systems and optical fields in microcavities. However, efficient quantum information processing still faces the significant challenge of integrating a range of highly dissimilar physical systems to realize elements for logic, memory, and long-range coupling. Mechanical systems have been proposed as a broadly applicable means for overcoming these disparities and transferring quantum states between different degrees of freedom. This is because mechanical systems can be engineered to coherently couple many different systems and can possess very low damping, particularly when operated at cryogenic temperatures. One particular solid state atom-like system which has emerged as a leading candidate for practical realization of quantum information processing is the negatively charged nitrogen vacancy (NV) center in diamond. The primary goal of my proposed program is to realize cavity optomechanics in monolithic single-crystal diamond resonators, which will be used to demonstrate spin-phonon coupling with integrated NV centers, as well as coherent wavelength conversion between visible NV emission and telecom wavelength photons.

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Haig Atikian

Graduate Student

Diamond has recently gained significant interest as a promising platform for on-chip high-performance photonic
devices. Diamond is also host to numerous defect color centers such as the nitrogen-vacancy (NV) center that can be utilized as an optically addressable spin based memory, particularly interesting in the field of quantum information processing...

Diamond has recently gained significant interest as a promising platform for on-chip high-performance photonic
devices. Diamond is also host to numerous defect color centers such as the nitrogen-vacancy (NV) center that can be utilized as an optically addressable spin based memory, particularly interesting in the field of quantum information processing. Scalable realization of such systems crucially depends on efficient coupling of photons to read out electronics, as well as a fabrication technique that allows for the realization of many systems in parallel. My work is focused on the integration of diamond nanophotonic structures with superconducting nanowire single photon detectors (SNSPDs) all on a diamond platform.

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Orad Reshef

Graduate Student

Photonics is an ideal platform for quantum information technologies, proposed for the advancement of fundamental theories and applications in large-scale secure networks, quantum information processors, and enhanced measurement and lithographic techniques. However, the generation, manipulation, and detection of single and entangled photons remain a challenge...

Photonics is an ideal platform for quantum information technologies, proposed for the advancement of fundamental theories and applications in large-scale secure networks, quantum information processors, and enhanced measurement and lithographic techniques. However, the generation, manipulation, and detection of single and entangled photons remain a challenge. We have identified Titanium dioxide as a low cost, scalable, CMOS-compatible material platform as a source of highly sought entangled photon triplets. These triplets would be directly generated on-chip and manipulable on an integrated photonic platform. In my PhD, I have been working to develop integrated TiO2 for applications in nonlinear optics, and in particular, the generation of entangled triplets.

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SEAS-FAS Research Support Recipient PIs

NameResearch Description
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Alan Aspuru-Guzik

Professor

One of the research interests of Alan Aspuru-Guzik and his group work at the interface of chemical physics and
quantum information, broadly speaking. He and his group have developed quantum algorithms for simulating
chemical reactions and electronic structure in quantum computers...

One of the research interests of Alan Aspuru-Guzik and his group work at the interface of chemical physics and
quantum information, broadly speaking. He and his group have developed quantum algorithms for simulating
chemical reactions and electronic structure in quantum computers. He has collaborated with experimental
quantum optics, NMR and superconducting qubit groups to realize experimental realizations of his proposals.
Another interest of his group related to the activities of the center, is the use optical microcavities and plasmonic
substrates for improved molecular detection. Finally, he and his group study quantum effects in photosynthesis
and light harvesting.

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Eric Mazur

Professor

Current challenges for quantum optics not only include the generation,
manipulation and detection of single photons, but interfacing these
potentially discrete technologies. To address these challenges, we are
exploring the linear and nonlinear optical properties of TiO2 these
functions on a single chip...

Current challenges for quantum optics not only include the generation,
manipulation and detection of single photons, but interfacing these
potentially discrete technologies. To address these challenges, we are
exploring the linear and nonlinear optical properties of TiO2 these
functions on a single chip. By using spontaneous nonlinear interactions in
nano-scale waveguides, TiO2 can generate heralded and entangled
single-photons from the visible to the NIR. These photons can be manipulated
using our conventional waveguide technology. Lastly, TiO2′s wide
transparency provides compatibility with integrated single-photon detectors,
paving the way for integrated on-chip quantum optics.

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Ken Crozier

Professor

The research interests of Crozier’s group are in optics, with an emphasis on nano-optics. One activity of particular interest is on plasmonic substrates for surface-enhanced Raman spectrosocpy, where Crozier’s group has investigated teh design of meal nanostructures for boosting the Raman scattering from molecules adsorbed on them...

The research interests of Crozier’s group are in optics, with an emphasis on nano-optics. One activity of particular interest is on plasmonic substrates for surface-enhanced Raman spectrosocpy, where Crozier’s group has investigated teh design of meal nanostructures for boosting the Raman scattering from molecules adsorbed on them. These substrates consist of arrays of single metal nanoparticles or pairs of metal nanoparticles seprated by small gaps. Crozier’s group has also developed nanofabrication methods by which these gaps can be made as narrow as 3 nm. His group has also investigated electromagnetic coupling between particles as a means for boosting the local fields and hence the Raman enhancement. Crozier’s group develops optical tweezers for trapping nanoparticles using plasmonic and photonic structures. The plasmonic tweezers employ heat-sinking approaches to prevent the otherwise deleterious effects of heating.

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Robert Westervelt

Professor

Westervelt’s group investigates the quantum behavior of electrons inside nanoscale semiconductor structures, and develops tools for the manipulation of biological systems. In mesoscopic physics, the group has developed liquid-helium cooled scanning probe microscopes that can image electron motion through nanoscale devices...

Westervelt’s group investigates the quantum behavior of electrons inside nanoscale semiconductor structures, and develops tools for the manipulation of biological systems. In mesoscopic physics, the group has developed liquid-helium cooled scanning probe microscopes that can image electron motion through nanoscale devices. They visualized the flow of electron waves through a two-dimensional electron gas (Topinka et al. 2003) and observed diffraction patterns and coherent interference (LeRoy et al. 2005), as well as cyclotron orbits in a magnetic field (Aidala et al. 2007). They have used the conducting tip as a movable gate to control a one-electron quantum dot formed in a semiconductor nanowire (Bleszynski et al. 2008) and a GaAs heterostructure (Fallahi et al. 2005). In related research, they have developed tunnel-coupled quantum dots and studied their behavior as artificial molecules (Livermore et al. 2006, Vidan et al. 2006) and tested Josephson junctions formed in Ge/Si nanowires (Xiang et al. 2006).
On the biophysics side, Westervelt’s group has developed hybrid Integrated Circuit / Microfluidic chips that combine the power of CMOS technology with the biocompatibility of microfluidics (Lee, Ham & Westervelt, 2007, Hunt et al. 2008). These devices act as programmable microfluidic systems that can trap, move, sort, and assemble biological cells and small particles in fluids.

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mikhail-lukin

Mikhail Lukin

Chair of Scientific Board

The Lukin group’s research focuses on both the theoretical and experimental studies in quantum optics and atomic physics. The emphasis is on studies of quantum systems consisting of interacting photons, atoms, molecules and electrons coupled to realistic environments. They are developing new techniques for controlling the quantum dynamics of such systems, and studying fundamental physical phenomena associated with them...

The Lukin group’s research focuses on both the theoretical and experimental studies in quantum optics and atomic physics. The emphasis is on studies of quantum systems consisting of interacting photons, atoms, molecules and electrons coupled to realistic environments. They are developing new techniques for controlling the quantum dynamics of such systems, and studying fundamental physical phenomena associated with them. These techniques are used to explore new physics, as well as to facilitate implementation of potential applications in emerging areas such as quantum information science and in more traditional fields such as nonlinear optics. In the course of this work they are also exploring the emerging interfaces between quantum optics and atomic physics on the one hand, and condensed matter and mesoscopic physics on the other.

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Marko Loncar

Board Member

Marko Lončar’s research focuses on phenomena resulting from the interaction of light and matter on a nano-scale level. These phenomena include efficient light confinement and emission within photonic crystals, light generation in engineered semiconductors (e.g. nanowires, quantum dots, quantum cascade lasers), manipulation of nano-scale objects using guided waves...

Marko Lončar’s research focuses on phenomena resulting from the interaction of light and matter on a nano-scale level. These phenomena include efficient light confinement and emission within photonic crystals, light generation in engineered semiconductors (e.g. nanowires, quantum dots, quantum cascade lasers), manipulation of nano-scale objects using guided waves. He is interested in development of functional nano-photonic devices, and their integration into systems, that can be used for optical communication and optical signal processiong, life sciences and quantum optics. Particular areas of interest include:

Periodic optical structures: e.g. photonic crystal devices, metamaterials and metalo-dielectric structures in general
Classical and and non-classical light sources based on nanostructures
Plasmonics
Nanofabrication techniques
Nanoscale electro-mechanical (NEMS) and opto-mechanical (NOMS) devices and systems
Application of nanophotonics in life sciences (e.g. bio-chemical sensors)
Mid-infrared and far-infrared devices and systems, including quantum cascade lasers

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