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Optical realization of one-dimensional generalized split-step quantum walks

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posted on 2023-01-06, 17:01 authored by P. A. Ameen Yasir, Abhaya S. Hegde, C. M. Chandrashekar
Quantum walks are more than tools for building quantum algorithms. They have been used effectively to model and simulate quantum dynamics in many complex physical processes. Particularly, a variant of discrete-time quantum walk known as split-step quantum walk is closely related to Dirac cellular automata and topological insulators whose realizations rely on position-dependent control of evolution operators. Owing to the ease of manipulating multiple degrees of freedom of photons, we provide an optical setup of split-step operators which in combination with position-dependent coin (PDC) operation can accomplish a table-top setup of generalized split-step walks. Also, we propose an optical implementation for PDC operation that allows, for instance, to realize electric quantum walks, control localization dynamics, and emulate space-time curvature effects. In addition, we propose a setup to realize {\it any} $t$-step split-step quantum walk involving 2 $J$-plates, 2 variable waveplates, a half-waveplate, an optical switch, and an optical delay line.

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