Nonlinear interaction between light and mechanical motion for quantum optics and quantum sensing experiments
Mechanical resonators are recently explored as novel solid-state based quantum devices. A leading platform are cavity optomechanical devices, which use light to control mechanical motion. However, a major challenge remains accessing the optomechanical nonlinearity on the level of single quanta.The purpose of this project is to go beyond state-of-the-art by reaching this nonlinear regime and to use it for generating nonclassical states, such as single phonon states, without resorting to post-selection. The nonlinear regime allows us to explore novel capabilities for mechanical-based sensing, such as nondestructive detection of single photons, and for quantum heat engines exploiting nonclassical mechanical states as resource.We will base our project on multi-element optomechanics, whereby light is coupled to an array of mechanical resonators. Concentration of the light field in the array has been suggested to reach the nonlinear regime. However, a roadblock so far has been the stringent requirement on fabricating a mechanical array that simultaneously exhibits high reflectivity and nanometer-precise spacing and thickness control. We pursue a novel approach that relies on AlGaAs heterostructures that allows us to realize all key requirements for multi-element optomechanics in an integrated device exploiting bottom-up material growth and top-down microfabrication.Our project will break new ground by accessing the full potential of optomechanical devices in the quantum regime.
Witlef Wieczorek (contact)
Assistant Professor at Chalmers, Microtechnology and Nanoscience (MC2), Quantum Technology
Swedish Research Council (VR)
Funding Chalmers participation during 2020–2023