The integration on a silicon-on-insulator (SOI) chip of all the components necessary for the generation, manipulation and detection of photonic quantum bits is nowadays seen as the most promising route toward scalability for quantum photonic engineering. Until now however, the lack of an “on-demand” source of single photons in silicon has hindered a full exploitation of this strategy.
This PhD project aims to develop such a silicon-based single photon source, integrated into a SOI photonic chip. The source will exploit the spontaneous emission of a single point defect in silicon, the color center W, whose ability to emit single photons has been demonstrated in 2022 by PHELIQS and partners. We will place a single W center at the core of an optical microcavity. Thanks to Purcell-enhancement, a quantum cavity effect, the single photons will all be prepared in the same quantum state, and efficiently funnelled into a waveguide. In order to build such coupled W-cavity systems with a high success rate, we will first develop ordered arrays of isolated W centers by localized ion implantation of SOI wafers. At the end of the project, we will realize a proof-of-principle integrated quantum optics experiment, exploiting W-single photon sources and single photon detectors on the same SOI chip.
The PhD student will be mostly in charge of the study of W centers and cavity effects by advanced optical spectroscopy. He/she will be also involved in technological developments.