skip to main content

Title: Observation of an environmentally insensitive solid state spin defect in diamond
Engineering coherent systems is a central goal of quantum science. Color centers in diamond are a promising approach, with the potential to combine the coherence of atoms with the scalability of a solid state platform. However, the solid environment can adversely impact coherence. For example, phonon- mediated spin relaxation can induce spin decoherence, and electric field noise can change the optical transition frequency over time. We report a novel color center with insensitivity to both of these sources of environmental decoherence: the neutral charge state of silicon vacancy (SiV0). Through careful material engineering, we achieve over 80% conversion of implanted silicon to SiV0. SiV0 exhibits excellent spin properties, with spin-lattice relaxation times (T1) approaching one minute and coherence times (T2) approaching one second, as well as excellent optical properties, with approximately 90% of its emission into the zero-phonon line and near-transform limited optical linewidths. These combined properties make SiV0 a promising defect for quantum networks.
Award ID(s):
Publication Date:
Journal Name:
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Interfacing solid-state defect electron spins to other quantum systems is an ongoing challenge. The ground-state spin’s weak coupling to its environment not only bestows excellent coherence properties but also limits desired drive fields. The excited-state orbitals of these electrons, however, can exhibit stronger coupling to phononic and electric fields. Here, we demonstrate electrically driven coherent quantum interference in the optical transition of single, basally oriented divacancies in commercially available 4H silicon carbide. By applying microwave frequency electric fields, we coherently drive the divacancy’s excited-state orbitals and induce Landau-Zener-Stückelberg interference fringes in the resonant optical absorption spectrum. In addition, we find remarkably coherent optical and spin subsystems enabled by the basal divacancy’s symmetry. These properties establish divacancies as strong candidates for quantum communication and hybrid system applications, where simultaneous control over optical and spin degrees of freedom is paramount.
  2. Integrating solid-state quantum emitters with photonic circuits is essential for realizing large-scale quantum photonic processors. Negatively charged tin-vacancy (SnV−) centers in diamond have emerged as promising candidates for quantum emitters because of their excellent optical and spin properties, including narrow-linewidth emission and long spin coherence times. SnV− centers need to be incorporated in optical waveguides for efficient onchip routing of the photons they generate. However, such integration has yet to be realized. In this Letter, we demonstrate the coupling of SnV− centers to a nanophotonic waveguide. We realize this device by leveraging our recently developed shallow ion implantation and growth method for the generation of high-quality SnV− centers and the advanced quasi-isotropic diamond fabrication technique. We confirm the compatibility and robustness of these techniques through successful coupling of narrow-linewidth SnV− centers (as narrow as 36 ± 2 MHz) to the diamond waveguide. Furthermore, we investigate the stability of waveguide-coupled SnV− centers under resonant excitation. Our results are an important step toward SnV−-based on-chip spin-photon interfaces, single-photon nonlinearity, and photon-mediated spin interactions.
  3. Spin defects in silicon carbide have the advantage of exceptional electron spin coherence combined with a near-infrared spin-photon interface, all in a material amenable to modern semiconductor fabrication. Leveraging these advantages, we integrated highly coherent single neutral divacancy spins in commercially available p-i-n structures and fabricated diodes to modulate the local electrical environment of the defects. These devices enable deterministic charge-state control and broad Stark-shift tuning exceeding 850 gigahertz. We show that charge depletion results in a narrowing of the optical linewidths by more than 50-fold, approaching the lifetime limit. These results demonstrate a method for mitigating the ubiquitous problem of spectral diffusion in solid-state emitters by engineering the electrical environment while using classical semiconductor devices to control scalable, spin-based quantum systems.

  4. Abstract Engineering the properties of quantum materials via strong light-matter coupling is a compelling research direction with a multiplicity of modern applications. Those range from modifying charge transport in organic molecules, steering particle correlation and interactions, and even controlling chemical reactions. Here, we study the modification of the material properties via strong coupling and demonstrate an effective inversion of the excitonic band-ordering in a monolayer of WSe 2 with spin-forbidden, optically dark ground state. In our experiments, we harness the strong light-matter coupling between cavity photon and the high energy, spin-allowed bright exciton, and thus creating two bright polaritonic modes in the optical bandgap with the lower polariton mode pushed below the WSe 2 dark state. We demonstrate that in this regime the commonly observed luminescence quenching stemming from the fast relaxation to the dark ground state is prevented, which results in the brightening of this intrinsically dark material. We probe this effective brightening by temperature-dependent photoluminescence, and we find an excellent agreement with a theoretical model accounting for the inversion of the band ordering and phonon-assisted polariton relaxation.
  5. Silicon carbide (SiC)-based defects are promising for quantum communications, quantum information processing, and for the next generation of quantum sensors, as they feature long coherence times, frequencies near the telecom, and optical and microwave transitions. For such applications, the efficient initialization of the spin state is necessary. We develop a theoretical description of the spin-polarization process by using the intersystem crossing of the silicon vacancy defect, which is enabled by a combination of optical driving, spin-orbit coupling, and interaction with vibrational modes. By using distinct optical drives, we analyze two spin-polarization channels. Interestingly, we find that different spin projections of the ground state manifold can be polarized. This paper helps in understanding initialization and readout of the silicon vacancy and explains some existing experiments with the silicon vacancy center in SiC.