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Using DNA Origami to Create Hybrid Nanophotonic Architectures for Single-Photon Emitters


Mitskovets, Anna (2020) Using DNA Origami to Create Hybrid Nanophotonic Architectures for Single-Photon Emitters. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/kqaj-ex65.


The limitations in physical dimensions of silicon transistors give us a stimulus to explore alternative systems for better computational performance. The most promising system that received a lot of attention in the past few years is a quantum computer. Ideally, a nanophotonic quantum computer would consist of hundreds of single-photon emitters, optical or plasmonic resonators, optical waveguides and interconnects. The main difficulty in large-scale production of such quantum photonic networks is the integration and deterministic coupling of single-photon sources to photonic elements.

In the first part of this thesis, we utilize spontaneous parametric down-conversion to create correlated pairs of indistinguishable photons. These photons are generated by bismuth borate nonlinear crystal and then are coupled to a photonic chip where they interfere at directional couplers to produce a path-entangled state. Our photonic chip consists of waveguides, directional couplers, and a single Mach-Zender interferometer with a thermo-optic phase shifter. When a part of the waveguide connecting directional couplers is replace with a plasmonic waveguide, quantum state of photons is converted to plasmonic state. Here we report a measurement of path entanglement between surface plasmons with 95% contrast, confirming that a path-entangled state can indeed survive without measurable decoherence. Our measurement suggests that elastic scattering mechanisms of the type that might cause pure dephasing in plasmonic systems must be weak enough not to significantly perturb the state of the metal under the experimental conditions we investigated.

The second part of this work is dedicated to the study of a novel DNA origami self-assembly technique for creating hybrid nanophotonic architectures to create single-photon emitters. DNA origami is a modular platform for the combination of molecular and colloidal components to create optical, electronic, and biological devices. We present a DNA origami molecule that can be deterministically positioned on a silicon chip within 3.2° alignment. Orientation is absolute (all degrees of freedom are specified) and arbitrary (every molecule’s orientation is independently specified). The use of orientation to optimize device performance is shown by aligning fluorescent emission dipoles within microfabricated optical cavities. Large-scale integration is demonstrated via an array of 3,456 DNA origami with 12 distinct orientations, which indicates the polarization of the excitation light. Following this experiment, we explore how many molecular emitters can be coupled to this DNA origami shape and discover interesting interactions between ssDNA extensions that can cause origami to fold along its seam. Finally, we examine DNA origami self-assembly methods that can be used to deterministically couple single-photon emitters to resonators in order to decrease pure-dephasing rates and increase indistinguishability of emitted photons.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Quantum plasmonics, DNA origami
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Engineering and Applied Science
Major Option:Applied Physics
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Atwater, Harry Albert (advisor)
  • Rothemund, Paul W. K. (co-advisor)
Thesis Committee:
  • Gopinath, Ashwin (chair)
  • Atwater, Harry Albert
  • Rothemund, Paul W. K.
  • Vahala, Kerry J.
  • Faraon, Andrei
Defense Date:29 May 2020
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:05312020-234931669
Persistent URL:
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription adapted for Chapter 2. adapted for Chapter 3.
Mitskovets, Anna0000-0003-1967-5334
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:13753
Deposited By: Anna Mitskovets
Deposited On:03 Jun 2020 22:03
Last Modified:08 Nov 2023 00:12

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