(Phys.org) A research team led by Mikhail Lukin at Harvard University has recently proposed a new type of metasurface that can control both the spatiotemporal and quantum properties of transmitted and reflected light. The team showed that realizing a quantum metasurface is possible and could be achieved by entangling the macroscopic response of thin atom arrays to light.
“Quantum metasurfaces are an entirely new type of materials designed atom by atom, which enable applications such as quantum computation with photons,” Rivka Bekenstein, said, “We combined a state-of-the-art technique for manipulating the state of many atoms by long-range interactions (i.e., Rydberg interactions) with a recent discovery of how a single sheet of atoms can reflect light. We identified an architecture that can be realized in the laboratory, in which a single layer of atoms can act as a switchable quantum mirror.”
“We are currently exploring additional experimental systems that can realize the quantum metasurfaces we proposed,” Bekenstein said. “We are also interested in revealing the nonlinear response of these quantum metasurfaces to light, which occur for higher intensity light beams. Finally, we are investigating specific practical applications of the proposed quantum metasurfaces for quantum information processing.”