Imperfections make photons perfect for quantum computing

Rice scientists show how atom-flat materials could produce polarized photons on demand

If you can make a single photon, tell it how to spin and tell it where to go, you have a basic element for next-generation computers that work with light instead of wires.

That appears to be possible with atom-thick materials, as demonstrated by several labs. Now, Rice University scientists have developed an understanding of the mechanism by which two-dimensional materials can be manipulated to produce the desired photons.

The Rice lab of materials theorist Boris Yakobson reported this month that by adding pre-arranged imperfections to atom-thick materials like molybdenum disulfide, they become perfectly capable of emitting single photons in either left or right polarization on demand.

The discovery through first-principles simulations is detailed in the American Chemical Society journal Nano Letters.

– See more at Rice News