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Quantum Modelling of Electro-Optic Modulators

By Jose Capmany and Carlos R. Fernandez-Pousa


Many components that are employed in quantum information and communication systems are well known photonic devices encountered in standard optical fiber communication systems, such as optical beamsplitters, waveguide couplers and junctions, electro-optic modulators and optical fiber links. The use of these photonic devices is becoming increasingly important especially in the context of their possible integration either in a specifically designed system or in an already deployed end-to-end fiber link. Whereas the behavior of these devices is well known under the classical regime, in some cases their operation under quantum conditions is less well understood. This paper reviews the salient features of the quantum scattering theory describing both the operation of the electro-optic phase and amplitude modulators in discrete and continuous-mode formalisms. This subject is timely and of importance in light of the increasing utilization of these devices in a variety of systems, including quantum key distribution and single-photon wavepacket measurement and conformation. In addition, the paper includes a tutorial development of the use of these models in selected but yet important applications, such as single and multi-tone modulation of photons, two-photon interference with phase-modulated light or the description of amplitude modulation as a quantum operation.Comment: 29 pages, 10 figures, Laser and Photonics Reviews (in press

Topics: Quantum Physics
Year: 2011
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