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State preparation by optical pumping in erbium-doped solids using stimulated emission and spin mixing

Hastings-Simon, S. R.
Published in Physical Review. A. 2008, vol. 78, no. 4, p. 043402-1/9
Abstract Erbium-doped solids are potential candidates for the realization of a quantum memory for photons at telecommunication wavelengths. The implementation of quantum memory proposals in rare-earth-ion-doped solids require spectral tailoring of the inhomogeneous absorption profile by efficient population transfer between ground-state levels (spin polarization) using optical pumping. In this paper we investigate the limiting factors of efficient optical pumping between ground-state Zeeman levels in an erbium-doped Y2SiO5 crystal. We introduce two methods to overcome these limiting factors: stimulated emission using a second laser and spin mixing using radio frequency excitation. Both methods significantly improve the degree of spin polarization. Population transfer between two Zeeman levels with less than 10% of the total population in the initial ground state is achieved, corresponding to a spin polarization greater than 90%. In addition, we demonstrate spectral tailoring by isolating a narrow absorption peak within a large transparency window.
Stable URL http://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:11682
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Other version: http://link.aps.org/doi/10.1103/PhysRevA.78.043402
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