Beaming light from a quantum emitter with a planar optical antenna

Year: 2017

Authors: Checcucci S., Lombardi P., Rizvi S., Sgrignuoli F., Gruhler N., Dieleman F.B.C., Cataliotti F.S., Pernice W.H.P., Agio M., Toninelli C.

Autors Affiliation: European Laboratory for Nonlinear Spectroscopy (LENS), 50019 Sesto Fiorentino, Italy; National Institute of Optics (CNR-INO), 50019 Sesto Fiorentino, Italy; Dipartimento di Fisica ed Astronomia, Università degli Studi di Firenze, 50019 Sesto Fiorentino, Italy; Center for Quantum Science and Technology in Arcetri (QSTAR), 50125 Florence, Italy; Institute of Nanotechnology, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), 76344 Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen, Germany; Institute of Physics, University of Muenster, 48149 Muenster, Germany; The Blackett Laboratory, Department of Physics, Imperial College London, London SW7 2AZ, UK; Laboratory of Nano-Optics, University of Siegen, 57072 Siegen, Germany

Abstract: The efficient interaction of light with quantum emitters is crucial to most applications in nano and quantum photonics, such as sensing or quantum information processing. Effective excitation and photon extraction are particularly important for the weak signals emitted by a single atom or molecule. Recent works have introduced novel collection strategies, which demonstrate that large efficiencies can be achieved by either planar dielectric antennas combined with high numerical aperture objectives or optical nanostructures that beam emission into a narrow angular distribution. However, the first approach requires the use of elaborate collection optics, while the latter is based on accurate positioning of the quantum emitter near complex nanoscale architectures; hence, sophisticated fabrication and experimental capabilities are needed. Here we present a theoretical and experimental demonstration of a planar optical antenna that beams light emitted by a single molecule, which results in increased collection efficiency at small angles without stringent requirements on the emitter position. The proposed device exhibits broadband performance and is spectrally scalable, and it is simple to fabricate and therefore applies to a wide range of quantum emitters. Our design finds immediate application in spectroscopy, quantum optics and sensing.


Volume: 6      Pages from: e16245-1  to: e16245-8

More Information: We thank V Greco and A Sordini for measuring the thickness of the thin films, B Tiribilli, F Dinelli and A Flatae for inspection of the samples by atomic force microscopy, DS Wiersma for access to clean room facilities, M Bellini and C Corsi for Ti:sapphire operation, G Mazzamuto for technical help and discussion and M Gurioli for stimulating discussions. This work benefited from the COST Action MP1403
KeyWords: Angular distribution; Antennas; Efficiency; Fluorescence microscopy; Laser pulses; Microwave antennas; Molecules; Nanoantennas; Optical instruments; Quantum optics, Collection efficiency; Experimental demonstrations; High numerical aperture objective; Nanoscale architectures; Optical nano antennas; Optical nanostructures; Quantum-information processing; Single molecule; Light
DOI: 10.1038/lsa.2016.245

Citations: 43
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