(LaserFocusWorld) Cuprous oxide (Cu2O) is a promising material for quantum photonics and optoelectronics, due to its ability to simulate highly excited Rydberg atomic states via the formation of solid-state excitons within the material. Now, a team of researchers from KTH Royal Institute of Technology (Stockholm, Sweden), Graz University of Technology (Graz, Austria), and CNRS, École Polytechnique (Palaiseau, France) has found a way to synthesize high-quality Cu2O microcrystals.
“The majority of quantum optics experiments with this material have been performed with geological samples found in mines—for instance, the Tsumeb mine in Namibia,” says Stephan Steinhauer, a researcher at KTH. “Our synthesis method is associated with very low-cost fabrication, suitable for mass production, and does not require gases or chemicals that are toxic or harmful for the environment.” He notes that the properties of Cu2O can lead to new schemes for quantum information processing with light in the solid state, which are difficult to realize with other materials.