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Efficient Spin-Photon Coupling in the Solid-State (ESPCSS)
Start date: Apr 1, 2016, End date: Mar 31, 2018 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The efficient coupling of a single electron spin to a single photon would represent a major milestone in our technological progress, and would lead to revolutionary advancements in communication and computation technologies exploiting quantum mechanical phenomena. Recently nano-scale `domes' of semiconductor known as quantum dots have emerged as the leading platform upon which this goal can be achieved; they can host localised electrons, and around them micro `pillars' can be grown which serve to channel photon emission. The catch, however, is that these are solid-state systems, and a quantum dot inevitably interacts with a large perturbing environment. The central question motivating this research is: How does the solid-state environment surrounding a quantum dot affect its interaction with light, and how can this environment be actively exploited to improve spin--photon coupling in these systems?Traditional approaches used to describe quantum dot--cavity systems are based on theories originally designed to treat atom--light interactions in free-space, and therefore inadequate to treat spins in solid-state systems beyond basic phenomenological descriptions. This research will go beyond these approaches by uniting the experienced researcher's expertise in modelling the optical properties of solid-state nanostructures, with the experimental expertise of Prof John Rarity, a world-leader in few-photon physics with a long history of demonstrating novel quantum phenomena. This research will provide a much-needed theoretical toolbox to model the optical properties of spins in a host emerging solid-state systems, and will pave the way towards scalable quantum optical communication and computation technologies

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