Optically programmable electron spin memory using semiconductor quantum dots.

Walter Schottky Institut, Technische Universität München, Am Coulombwall 3, D-85748 Garching, Germany.
Nature (Impact Factor: 42.35). 12/2004; 432(7013):81-4. DOI: 10.1038/nature03008
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The spin of a single electron subject to a static magnetic field provides a natural two-level system that is suitable for use as a quantum bit, the fundamental logical unit in a quantum computer. Semiconductor quantum dots fabricated by strain driven self-assembly are particularly attractive for the realization of spin quantum bits, as they can be controllably positioned, electronically coupled and embedded into active devices. It has been predicted that the atomic-like electronic structure of such quantum dots suppresses coupling of the spin to the solid-state quantum dot environment, thus protecting the 'spin' quantum information against decoherence. Here we demonstrate a single electron spin memory device in which the electron spin can be programmed by frequency selective optical excitation. We use the device to prepare single electron spins in semiconductor quantum dots with a well defined orientation, and directly measure the intrinsic spin flip time and its dependence on magnetic field. A very long spin lifetime is obtained, with a lower limit of about 20 milliseconds at a magnetic field of 4 tesla and at 1 kelvin.

  • Journal of Computational and Theoretical Nanoscience 03/2011; 8(3):449-463. · 1.03 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Spin is a fundamental property of electrons and plays an important role in information storage. For spin-based quantum information technology, preparation and read-out of the electron spin state must be spin coherent, but both the traditional preparation and read-out of the spin state are projective to up/down spin states, which do not have spin coherence. We have recently demonstrated that the polarization coherence of light can be coherently transferred to the spin coherence of electrons in a semiconductor. We have also developed a new scheme named tomographic Kerr rotation (TKR) by generalizing the traditional KR to directly read out the spin coherence of optically prepared electrons without the need for the spin dynamics, which allows the spin projection measurement in an arbitrary set of basis states. These demonstrations were performed using g-factor-controlled semiconductor quantum wells with precessing and non-precessing electrons. The developed scheme offers a tool for performing basis-independent preparation and read-out of a spin quantum state in a solid. These results encourage us to make a quantum media converter between flying photon qubits and stationary electron spin qubits in semiconductors.
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In this chapter we review the use of spins in optically-active InAs quantum dots as the key physical building block for constructing a quantum repeater, with a particular focus on recent results demonstrating entanglement between a quantum memory (electron spin qubit) and a flying qubit (polarization- or frequency-encoded photonic qubit). This is a first step towards demonstrating entanglement between distant quantum memories (realized with quantum dots), which in turn is a milestone in the roadmap for building a functional quantum repeater. We also place this experimental work in context by providing an overview of quantum repeaters, their potential uses, and the challenges in implementing them.