Waveguide QED with Rydberg superatoms

by Prof. Sebastian Hofferberth

University of Bonn, Germany
at Quantum optics seminar

Wed, 16 Nov 2022, 16:00
ZOOM only



Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85920575952

The interaction of light and matter plays a central role in our daily life, technical applications and fundamental science. On the microscopic level, this interaction happens on the level of individual emitters absorbing and emitting single photons – fundamental processes that have been studied in quantum optics for many decades. On the other hand, in most optical media, we can “zoom” out and describe light propagation efficiently with macroscopic models. Realizing a quantum nonlinear medium – where the interaction of every photon with every atom has to be considered – is a central goal of modern optics, with a wide range of applications in photonics and quantum technology.
In our lab, we explore how to create such strong optical coupling at the level of individual photons by mapping the interactions between Rydberg excitations onto optical photons. These interactions lead to a blockade effect so that an optical medium smaller than the blockaded volume only supports a single excitation which is collectively shared amongst all blockaded atoms forming a ‘Rydberg superatom’. Thanks to the collective nature of the excitation, the superatom effectively represents a single emitter with a strongly enhanced coupling to few-photon probe fields with directional emission into the initial probe mode
This makes Rydberg superatoms an ideal platform to study the interaction of individual two-level emitters with quantised light fields and for scaling up emitter by emitter into a cascaded quantum system of multiple superatoms to effectively form a one-dimensional waveguide-QED system – without an actual waveguide.

Created on 12-11-2022 by Folman, Ron (folman)
Updaded on 12-11-2022 by Folman, Ron (folman)