Single-Photon Detection using a Quantum-Dot-Gated Resonant RLC Circuit

Tyler Nickel, Yann Talhouarne, Andrew Prudhom, Richard Allenby, Eric Gansen


We report on a novel detection scheme that uses semiconductor quantum dots and electrical resonance to detect single photons of light. Here, a quantum-dot, optically gated field-effect transistor (QDOGFET) is used as the resistive element of a resonant RLC (resistor-inductor-capacitor) circuit. A photon is detected when it photocharges a quantum dot, thus modifying the resistance of the QDOGFET and altering the resonance condition of the surrounding circuit. Because the circuit functions as a bandpass filter, rejecting much of the electrical noise that can obscure weak photo-induced signals, the RLC detection scheme is sensitive enough to detect individual photons of light. 

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