(UofAZNews) University of Arizona engineering and optical sciences researchers, in collaboration with engineers from General Dynamics Mission Systems, demonstrate how a combination of two techniques – radio frequency photonics sensing and quantum metrology – can give sensor networks a previously unheard-of level of precision. The work involves transferring information from electrons to photons, then using quantum entanglement to increase the photons’ sensing capabilities.
“This quantum sensing paradigm could create opportunities to improve GPS systems, astronomy laboratories and biomedical imaging capabilities,” said Zheshen Zhang, assistant professor of materials science and engineering and optical sciences, and principal investigator of the university’s Quantum Information and Materials Group. “It could be used to improve the performance of any application that requires a network of sensors.”
GPS, home Wi-Fi and communications on aircraft are all powered by radio-frequency, or RF, waves, which carry information from a transmitter at one point to a sensor at another. The sensors interpret this information in different ways. For example, a GPS sensor determines its location by using the amount of time it takes to receive a signal from a satellite. For applications such as in-door localization and defeating spoofing GPS signals, a wireless sensor measures the angle at which it receives an RF wave.