Stationary Light In Cold Atoms
Date du début: 1 août 2011,
Date de fin: 31 juil. 2015
"Our modern knowledge-based society relies on fast and efficient processing of information. Conventional electronic data storage and processing are already about to reach their limits in terms of capacities and processor rates. Thus, we require novel approaches to store and process large amounts of information at high performance. Modern quantum optics already provides some basic strategies to reach these goals, e.g. the concepts of quantum memories, quantum computation, or quantum cryptography.Many of these approaches rely on interactions between coherent radiation and quantized matter. Electromagnetically-induced transparency (EIT) exhibits a prominent example. EIT triggered the development of many novel concepts for optical information storage. This led to the implementation of slow light, storage of light pulses in atomic coherences, and quite recently the concept of stationary light pulses (SLPs). SLPs may be understood as “freezing” radiation in an appropriately driven atomic medium. This is similar to storage of light in a laser cavity – but without the need for mirrors.While experimental investigations on SLPs are still very rare, theoretical studies already predicted a number of surprising phenomena related to SLPs. Examples are, e.g. the generation of entangled wave packets, Bose-Einstein condensation of stationary light polaritons, and the “crystallization” of photons. Moreover, SLPs permit strong nonlinear optical processes at the level of few photons. This enables, e.g. the development of novel switches for quantum information networks.SLICA deals with the experimental implementation and investigation of SLPs. This requires cold atoms, prepared at large optical depth, i.e. an exotic type of matter – and a technological challenge. Thus, SLICA aims at a combination of new technological approaches with background in cold matter and novel concepts of coherent interactions, contributing to the strongly emerging field of quantum technologies."
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