Superconducting nanowire single-photon detectors (SNSPDs) are a promising technology for long-distance optical communication and quantum information processing. Recent advances in single-photon generation, storage and detection technologies have spurred interest in integration of these components onto a single microchip, which would act as a low-power non-classical optical processor. I will present a method for the scalable integration of SNSPDs with photonic chips and show that, using a micron-scale flip-chip process, waveguide-coupled SNSPDs can be integrated onto a variety of material systems with high yield. This technology enabled the assembly of the first photonic chip with multiple adjacent SNSPDs with average system detection efficiencies beyond 10%. Using this prototype, I will show the first on-chip detection of non-classical light. I will further demonstrate optimizations to the detector design and fabrication processes that improved the timing jitter to 24ps for detectors with high internal efficiency. Furthermore, I will show a novel single-photon detector design that has the potential to reach photodetection dead times below 1ns.
Thesis Supervisor: Prof. Karl Berggren