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Spin-wave quantum memories for single photon storage and generation

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Photonic quantum memories are important devices in quantum information science as they provide a quantum interface between flying and stationary qubits. The ability to store a quantum state of light enables the synchronization of different probabilistic quantum processes, which in turns allows the realization of scalable quantum networks and quantum repeaters. Ensemble of atoms provide an appealing platform for the implementation of photonic quantum memories, as they allow strong light-matter coupling without the need of high-finesse cavities, and ability to store quantum information in a multiplexed fashion. In atomic ensembles, photons are mapped as collective spin excitation (spin-waves), which can store photonic quantum information for long times and be efficiently converted back into single photons. In this talk, I will describe various examples and applications of spin-waves quantum memories, both in laser cooled atomic gases and in solid-state atomic ensembles. The first part of the talk will be devoted to spin-wave quantum memories in a solid-state environment, based on Praseodymium doped crystals. Recent results include the demonstration of quantum correlations between a telecom photon a multimode spin-wave solid-state quantum memory. The second part will describe the realization of a photon pair source with embedded quantum memory, using spontaneous Raman scattering in ensembles of atoms. Experiments demonstrating the generation of narrowband and synchronizable single photons with highly tuneable wave shape from a cold atomic ensemble of Rubidium atoms will be described. This source enabled the mapping of single photons into highly excited Rydberg states in a second ensemble, a first step towards a strong interaction between two single photons. Finally, the first demonstration of a solid-state photon pair source with embedded multimode memory will be presented

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