Quantum optics is a field of research that studies non-classical (i.e., quantum) properties of light (or photons) and their interactions with atoms. This area of research is instrumental for developing modern technologies, like lasers and atomic clocks, which are key components for GPS, as well as emerging innovations (e.g., quantum computers that perform certain calculations exponentially faster than classic computers and quantum communications that provide unconditionally secure Internet communications).
Trends in current faculty-led research can be categorized, as follows:
- Quantum imaging and quantum metrology for attaining ultra-high precision and resolution measurements approaching permissible limits of the laws of quantum physics through the manipulation of non-classical correlations among individual photons.
- Quantum communication for studying new protocols (e.g. multi-photon quantum key distribution, quantum stream cipher, quantum threshold cryptography, and others).
- Quantum memory for developing a quantum memory based on an atomic vapor in a cavity that forms the backbone of a scalable quantum communications network and provides the essential building block for single photon generation, quantum repeaters, quantum memories, frequency conversion, and single photon detection.