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Chip-Scale, Sub-Hz Fundamental Sub-kHz Integral Linewidth 780 nm Laser through Self-Injection-Locking a Fabry-P\'erot laser to an Ultra-High Q Integrated Resonator

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posted on 2023-07-13, 16:01 authored by Andrei Isichenko, Nitesh Chauhan, Kaikai Liu, Mark W. Harrington, Daniel J. Blumenthal
Today's state of the art precision experiments in quantum, gravimetry, navigation, time keeping, and fundamental science have strict requirements on the level and spectral distribution of laser frequency noise. For example, the laser interaction with atoms and qubits requires ultra-low frequency noise at multiple offset frequencies due to hyperfine atomic transitions, motional sidebands, and fast pulse sequencing. Chip-scale integration of lasers that meet these requirements is essential for reliability, low-cost, and weight. Here, we demonstrate a significant advancement in atomic precision light sources by realizing a chip-scale, low-cost, 780 nm laser for rubidium atom applications with record-low 640 mHz (white noise floor at 0.2 Hz$^2$/Hz) fundamental and 732 Hz integral linewidths and a frequency noise that is multiple orders of magnitude lower than previous hybrid and heterogeneous self-injection locked 780 nm lasers and lower noise than bulk microresonator implementations. The laser is a Fabry-P\'erot laser diode self-injection locked to an ultra-high Q photonic integrated silicon nitride resonator. This performance is enabled by a 145 million resonator Q with a 30 dB extinction ratio, the highest Q at 780 nm, to the best of our knowledge. We analyze the impact of our frequency noise on specific atomic applications including atomic frequency references, Rydberg quantum gates, and cold atom gravimeters. The photonic integrated resonator is fabricated using a CMOS foundry-compatible, wafer-scale process, with demonstrated integration of other components showing promise for a full system-on-a-chip. This performance is scalable to other visible atomic wavelengths, opening the door to a variety of transitions across many atomic species and enabling low-power, compact, ultra-low noise lasers impacting applications including quantum sensing, computing, clocks and more.

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