Atomic System for Quantum Secure Communications

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: 80NSSC19C0143
Agency Tracking Number: 186702
Amount: $683,847.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: H9
Solicitation Number: SBIR_18_P2
Timeline
Solicitation Year: 2018
Award Year: 2019
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2019-08-14
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2021-08-13
Small Business Information
3030 Sterling Cir, Boulder, CO, 80301-2338
DUNS: 800608643
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Thomas Noel
 Sr. Scientist/Group Leader Quantum Technologies
 (303) 440-1284
 tom.noel@coldquanta.com
Business Contact
 Steven Hibbs
Phone: (228) 813-6264
Email: james.s.hibbs@nasa.gov
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
In the next decade, quantum technologies will provide revolutionary advances in communications, sensing and metrology, information processing, timekeeping, and navigation. Of particular interest to this NASA solicitation is the transformative potential of quantum technology in the realm of communications. Furthermore, transmission of quantum information over arbitrary distances raises new possibilities in sensing, networked clocks, and distributed quantum computation. The entanglement distribution at the heart of all these applications relies on the same underlying ldquo;quantum repeaterrdquo; technology. ColdQuantarsquo;s objective in this Phase II SBIR is to produce a critical enabling quantum repeater component: a long-lived quantum memory that is strongly coupled to optical fields for storage and recall of single photons.nbsp;During Phase I, ColdQuanta investigated generation of atomic ensembles with ultra-high optical density (ODgt;100) for generation and storage of quantum information because high OD is critical for attaining high memory efficiency.nbsp;nbsp;However, the residual atomic motion in the Phase I ensemble results in dephasing of the quantum memory on a timescale of several microseconds, rather than the many milliseconds required for long-range quantum networking.nbsp;nbsp;Nevertheless, the Phase I study demonstrated ColdQuantarsquo;s ability to produce high OD ensembles of cold atoms to boost memory efficiency. The remaining task, proposed for Phase II, is to modify the Phase I atom ensemble generation scheme by trapping the atoms in an optical lattice, which limits residual motion and therefore motional dephasing allowing memory lifetimes up to 0.3 seconds to be observed. Development and fabrication of the photon-coupled quantum memory system in Phase II will be highly efficient because the system can be produced by minor modification of ColdQuantarsquo;s existing DoubleMOT commercial product, which comprises the vacuum cell, magnetics, and optics needed to produce cold atom ensembles.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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