7,254 research outputs found

    Highly entangled photons from hybrid piezoelectric-semiconductor quantum dot devices

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    Entanglement resources are key ingredients of future quantum technologies. If they could be efficiently integrated into a semiconductor platform a new generation of devices could be envisioned, whose quantum-mechanical functionalities are controlled via the mature semiconductor technology. Epitaxial quantum dots (QDs) embedded in diodes would embody such ideal quantum devices, but QD structural asymmetries lower dramatically the degree of entanglement of the sources and hamper severely their real exploitation in the foreseen applications. In this work, we overcome this hurdle using strain-tunable optoelectronic devices, where any QD can be tuned for the emission of highly polarization-entangled photons. The electrically-controlled sources violate Bell inequalities without the need of spectral or temporal filtering and they feature the highest degree of entanglement ever reported for QDs, with concurrence as high as 0.75(2). These quantum-devices are at present the most promising candidates for the direct implementation of QD-based entanglement-resources in quantum information science and technology

    System-Engineered Miniaturized Robots: From Structure to Intelligence

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    The development of small machines, once envisioned by Feynman decades ago, has stimulated significant research in materials science, robotics, and computer science. Over the past years, the field of miniaturized robotics has rapidly expanded with many research groups contributing to the numerous challenges inherent to this field. Smart materials have played a particularly important role as they have imparted miniaturized robots with new functionalities and distinct capabilities. However, despite all efforts and many available soft materials and innovative technologies, a fully autonomous system-engineered miniaturized robot (SEMR) of any practical relevance has not been developed yet. In this review, the foundation of SEMRs is discussed and six main areas (structure, motion, sensing, actuation, energy, and intelligence) which require particular efforts to push the frontiers of SEMRs further are identified. During the past decade, miniaturized robotic research has mainly relied on simplicity in design, and fabrication. A careful examination of current SEMRs that are physically, mechanically, and electrically engineered shows that they fall short in many ways concerning miniaturization, full-scale integration, and self-sufficiency. Some of these issues have been identified in this review. Some are inevitably yet to be explored, thus, allowing to set the stage for the next generation of intelligent, and autonomously operating SEMRs

    Nonlinear surface magneto-plasmonics in Kretschmann multilayers

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    The nonlinear magneto-plasmonics aims to utilize plasmonic excitations to control the mechanisms and taylor the efficiencies of the non-linear light frequency conversion at the nanoscale. We investigate the mechanisms of magnetic second harmonic generation in hybrid gold-cobalt-silver multilayer structures, which support propagating surface plasmon polaritons at both fundamental and second harmonic frequencies. Using magneto-optical spectroscopy in Kretschmann geometry, we show that the huge magneto-optical modulation of the second harmonic intensity is dominated by the excitation of surface plasmon polaritons at the second harmonic frequency, as shown by tuning the optical wavelength over the spectral region of strong plasmonic dispersion. Our proof-of-principle experiment highlights bright prospects of nonlinear magneto-plasmonics and contributes to the general understanding of the nonlinear optics of magnetic surfaces and interfaces.Comment: Main Manuscript: 5 pages, 3 figures. Supplementary Information: 10 pages, 7 figure

    Nano energy for miniaturized systems

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    Skin mountable electronic devices are in a high-speed development at the crossroads of materials science, electronics, and computer science. Sophisticated functions, such as sensing, actuating, and computing, are integrated into a soft electronic device that can be firmly mounted to any place of human body. These advanced electronic devices are capable of yielding abilities for us whenever they are needed and even expanding our abilities beyond their natural limitations. Despite the great promise of skin mounted electronic devices, they still lack satisfactory power supplies that are safe and continuous. This Perspective discusses the prospects of the development of energy storage devices for the next generation skin mountable electronic devices based on their unique requirements on flexibility and miniaturized size

    Ca2+ Microdomains, Calcineurin and the Regulation of Gene Transcription

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    Ca2+ ions function as second messengers regulating many intracellular events, including neurotransmitter release, exocytosis, muscle contraction, metabolism and gene transcription. Cells of a multicellular organism express a variety of cell-surface receptors and channels that trigger an increase of the intracellular Ca2+ concentration upon stimulation. The elevated Ca2+ concentration is not uniformly distributed within the cytoplasm but is organized in subcellular microdomains with high and low concentrations of Ca2+ at different locations in the cell. Ca2+ ions are stored and released by intracellular organelles that change the concentration and distribution of Ca2+ ions. A major function of the rise in intracellular Ca2+ is the change of the genetic expression pattern of the cell via the activation of Ca2+-responsive transcription factors. It has been proposed that Ca2+-responsive transcription factors are differently affected by a rise in cytoplasmic versus nuclear Ca2+. Moreover, it has been suggested that the mode of entry determines whether an influx of Ca2+ leads to the stimulation of gene transcription. A rise in cytoplasmic Ca2+ induces an intracellular signaling cascade, involving the activation of the Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein phosphatase calcineurin and various protein kinases (protein kinase C, extracellular signal-regulated protein kinase, Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinases). In this review article, we discuss the concept of gene regulation via elevated Ca2+ concentration in the cytoplasm and the nucleus, the role of Ca2+ entry and the role of enzymes as signal transducers. We give particular emphasis to the regulation of gene transcription by calcineurin, linking protein dephosphorylation with Ca2+ signaling and gene expression
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