High-dimensional quantum information processing with linear optics
Fitzpatrick, Casey Alan
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Quantum information processing (QIP) is an interdisciplinary field concerned with the development of computers and information processing systems that utilize quantum mechanical properties of nature to carry out their function. QIP systems have become vastly more practical since the turn of the century. Today, QIP applications span imaging, cryptographic security, computation, and simulation (quantum systems that mimic other quantum systems). Many important strategies improve quantum versions of classical information system hardware, such as single photon detectors and quantum repeaters. Another more abstract strategy engineers high-dimensional quantum state spaces, so that each successful event carries more information than traditional two-level systems allow. Photonic states in particular bring the added advantages of weak environmental coupling and data transmission near the speed of light, allowing for simpler control and lower system design complexity. In this dissertation, numerous novel, scalable designs for practical high-dimensional linear-optical QIP systems are presented. First, a correlated photon imaging scheme using orbital angular momentum (OAM) states to detect rotational symmetries in objects using measurements, as well as building images out of those interactions is reported. Then, a statistical detection method using chains of OAM superpositions distributed according to the Fibonacci sequence is established and expanded upon. It is shown that the approach gives rise to schemes for sorting, detecting, and generating the recursively defined high-dimensional states on which some quantum cryptographic protocols depend. Finally, an ongoing study based on a generalization of the standard optical multiport for applications in quantum computation and simulation is reported upon. The architecture allows photons to reverse momentum inside the device. This in turn enables realistic implementation of controllable linear-optical scattering vertices for carrying out quantum walks on arbitrary graph structures, a powerful tool for any quantum computer. It is shown that the novel architecture provides new, efficient capabilities for the optical quantum simulation of Hamiltonians and topologically protected states. Further, these simulations use exponentially fewer resources than feedforward techniques, scale linearly to higher-dimensional systems, and use only linear optics, thus offering a concrete experimentally achievable implementation of graphical models of discrete-time quantum systems.
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