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ERC Grant Furthers Study of Quantum Info Processing

VIENNA, Jan. 23, 2014 — A five-year, $2.7 million grant awarded by the European Research Council (ERC) will further the study of fiber-based quantum communications and information processing.

Arno Rauschenbeutel, a professor at the Atomic Institute at Vienna University of Technology, received the ERC Consolidator Grant to support research involving the use of fiber optic cables to couple atoms and light.


A glass fiber, about half as thick as a human hair, runs light on a spiral path around the axis. Courtesy of Vienna University of Technology.


Rauschenbeutel and a team from the Inter-University Vienna Center for Quantum Science and Technology are working to create a communications network that would allow the teleportation of quantum information between continents.

The group is using ultrathin glass fibers that are 500 nm thick, which is less than the wavelength of light that is passed through it. As a result, the lightwave does not fit completely into the fiber, but rather protrudes a bit to the outside.

“It is in this area just outside of the fiber where even an electromagnetic field can be felt … atoms couple to the light,” Rauschenbeutel said.

If two objects are entangled – either two photons or a photon and an atom – then their states are more strongly correlated with each other. This entanglement will play a central role in future quantum communications networks, storage and quantum information processing.

To make teleportation of quantum information possible in the future, Rauschenbeutel said three elements are required: a source of photons, a quantum memory in which the information can be stored reliably, and a nonlinear interaction.

For more information, visit: vcq.quantum.at 


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