A European research collaboration, led by KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, reported a new method of controlling and manipulating single photons without generating heat. The solution makes it possible to integrate optical switches and single-photon detectors in a single chip.
The team reported to have developed an optical switch that is reconfigured with microscopic mechanical movement rather than heat, making the switch compatible with heat-sensitive single-photon detectors.
Using microelectromechanical (MEMS) actuation, the solution enables optical switching and photon detection on a single semiconductor chip while maintaining the cold temperatures required by single-photon detectors.
The new method enables control of single photons without the disadvantage of heating up a semiconductor chip and thereby rendering single-photon detectors useless. (Phys.org)
The paper has been published in Nature Communications.