On silicon chip quantum optics for quantum computing and secure communications


Funded by: Provincia Autonoma di Trento  
Calls: Grandi Progetti 2012
Start date: 2013-09-01  End date: 2016-08-31
Total Budget: EUR 2.319.456,75  INO share of the total budget: EUR 320.000,00
Scientific manager: Lorenzo Pavesi   and for INO is: Carusotto Iacopo

Web Site: Visit

Organization/Institution/Company main assignee: Universita’ di Trento

other Organization/Institution/Company involved:
Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich
Fondazione Bruno Kessler

other INO’s people involved:

Abstract: SIQURO aims at bringing the quantum world into integrated photonics by using the silicon platform and, therefore, permitting in a natural way the integration of
quantum photonics with electronics. In this way, by using the same successful paradigm of microelectronics, the vision is to have low cost and mass-
manufacturable integrated quantum photonic circuits for a variety of different applications in quantum computing, secure communications and services. This will
be achieved on one side by engineering the optical properties of silicon by using nanotechnology and material sciences and on the other side by developing
suitable quantum theories to predict the properties of photons in such a specific systems.
In fact, the whole values chain is faced in SIQURO: theory of quantum fluids of photons, experimental generation of rotating photon gasses, phenomenology of
strongly correlated photon gasses in silicon waveguide towards a quantum C-Not gate, demonstration of entangled photon pairs and heralded photon generation in
strained silicon waveguides, development of a new mid infrared detector based on up-converted photons, fabrication of an heterogeneous mode-locked III-V laser on
silicon, engineering of a quantum random number generator based on spontaneous emission of radiation in silicon, spin-off of a company aimed at
commercializing the quantum random number generator.
The various building blocks for an integrated quantum photonic circuit will all be demonstrated in SIQURO. The eventual further step is their integration in a single circuit where the heterogeneous integrated mode-locked laser acts as a pump to induce second order or third order parametric processes in suitably designed silicon waveguides which generate the correlated photon pairs or single heralded photons. These photons, with mid infrared wavelength, will then propagate,
without suffering two photon absorption, in a silicon quantum circuits produced on
the basis of the theory developed in SIQURO. Then, the photons will be up-
converted to a spectral region suitable for being absorbed by a silicon
photomultiplier. Therefore, from the quantum optics circuit, an electronic signal
will be generated which will be easily processed by standard microelectronics
circuits. A simple example of this integrated quantum photonic circuits will be
implemented in SIQURO to demonstrate a Quantum Random Number Generator
on a silicon platform with superior performances and significantly lower cost than
the one already present on the market.
The SIQURO project is based on the collaboration of a nano-silicon photonic
research group at UniTN, of a silicon manufacturing group at FBK, a quantum
theoretical group at CNR-INO and a quantum optics laboratory at ETH. In addition,
subcontracting companies join this project in order to bring-in the expertise in
cryptographic testing (Telsy SPA), in silicon photomultipliers (AdvanSiD), in III-V
mode-locked laser (III-V Lab). UniTN will also provide expertise in the use of
algebraic techniques to test the randomness of the produced number sequence.
The various companies involved in SIQURO have interest in commercializing the
intermediate results of the project, e. g. the up-conversion MIR photodector or the
silicon integrated mode locked laser. This will have an impact on the territory in
terms of novel joint ventures and increased competitiveness.
Via SIQURO, a unique local collaboration with international links will be formed at
the right time when integrated quantum photonic circuits are starting to appear,
still without the generality and completeness of the ones here proposed. The
collaboration will built on the training and exchange of PhD students and post-
docs specifically enrolled for the project. Indeed specific actions will be
undertaken at this end. Finally, a new quantum optics laboratory will be started at
UniTN in collaboration with ETH where the different structure designed and
produced within SIQURO will be tested.

INO’s Experiments/Theoretical Study correlated:
On silicon chip quantum optics for quantum computing and secure communications (SiQuro)

The Scientific Results:
1) Intermode reactive coupling induced by waveguide-resonator interaction
2) Quantum Mechanics with a Momentum-Space Artificial Magnetic Field