Quantum Optical Laboratories

The Quantum Optical Laboratories are a suite of four temperature-controlled and vibration-damped spaces, approximately 150m2 in size. The laboratories are optimised for low-light quantum optics experiments, with an adaptable configuration of low-bandwidth lighting, custom enclosures for optical isolation (and air flow reduction), light-lock entry doors, and other related features. The facility is equipped with three tuneable short-pulse (femto- and pico-second) mode locked free-space lasers, one ultra-low noise fibre-output femtosecond laser, as well as a range of other high-quality lasers for protocols and alignment. Two sub-Kelvin closed-cycle cryostats house ultra-high-efficiency superconducting single-photon detectors obtained through our collaborations with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (USA) and UNSW.

There is a significant suite of low-noise electronics that support this state-of-the-art detector system. In 2020, we added custom cryogenic amplifiers to the system, allowing for faster photon counting. Other important equipment includes a number of other single-photon detectors, multiple custom nonlinear crystals for generating single-photon pairs, custom designed optics, fast electro-optic modulators, nanopositioning stages, and computer- controlled motion stages for setting the position of optical elements with very high precision. Together, all these resources represent a highly reconfigurable test bed for optical quantum information protocols; the development of advanced sources of quantum light such as a high-coincidence-efficiency source of entangled photon pairs; novel detection and feedback schemes and the study of the fundamental properties of the quantum world. CQC2T also has the support of mechanical and electronic workshop facilities.

Fabrication and Characterisation Facility

In this facility, we have general clean room processing equipment, including cleaning, curing, and spin-coating equipment, as well as an optical writing setup suitable for the development of liquid crystal photoalignment technology. The facility also houses a Raith150-TWO electron beam lithography system, and electron beam evaporator for the deposition of thin film.