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Polarization-entangled photon pair generation from an epsilon-near-zero metasurface

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Version 2 2024-06-15, 16:00
Version 1 2024-05-08, 16:00
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posted on 2024-06-15, 16:00 authored by Wenhe Jia, Grégoire Saerens, Ülle-Linda Talts, Helena Weigand, Robert J. Chapman, Liu Li, Rachel Grange, Yuanmu Yang
Polarization-entangled photon pair sources are essential for diverse quantum technologies, such as quantum communication, computation, and imaging. However, the generation of complex polarization-entangled quantum states has long been constrained by the available nonlinear susceptibility tensor of natural nonlinear crystals, necessitating a cumbersome and intricate setup for additional coherent superposition or post-selection. In this study, we introduce and experimentally demonstrate a nanoscale polarization-entangled photon pair source utilizing an artificially-engineered metamaterial platform. This platform is based on a plasmonic metasurface that is strongly coupled to an epsilon-near-zero (ENZ) material. By precisely engineering resonances at both pump and signal/idler wavelengths, and leveraging the field enhancement provided by the ENZ effect, the photon pair generation efficiency of the 68-nm-thick metasurface is significantly boosted. More notably, the ENZ metasurface platform facilitates versatile manipulation of the system's anisotropic second-order nonlinear susceptibility tensor, enabling direct control over the polarization states of the photon pairs, which leads to the generation of a polarization-entangled Bell state without the need for additional components. Our approach opens a new avenue for the simultaneous photon pair generation and quantum state engineering in a compact platform.

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