Full-field Coherent Quantum Imaging

Lead Research Organisation: Heriot-Watt University
Department Name: Sch of Engineering and Physical Science


Quantum entanglement is the invisible non-classical link that can exist between objects separated from each other. Although disputed by Einstein, entanglement is now accepted as a fundamental property of the universe. Light sources exist where photons are emitted as entangled pairs, each photon is ill-defined in direction and energy, but measurement of either gives knowledge of both. If one of the beams of photons is used to illuminate an object, then the image is imprinted onto the other / enabling detection by a remote camera. This is called Quantum or Ghost Imaging, an object placed in one location and be imaged at another! This is all thanks to the coherence of quantum mechanics.Making Ghost Imaging work is a technological challenge, one needs to detect the position of individual photons and distinguish these from any and all sources of noise. To date this has only been possible by raster-scanning single detectors backwards and forwards over the image plane / meaning any Ghost image takes a long time to record. In this work we will develop a real-time Ghost Camera giving live Ghost Images.The system will allow us to explore still disputed questions in the interpretation of Quantum Mechanics including the correct angular form of Heisenberg's uncertainty principle; the pioneering of ghost spectroscopy and explore potential applications in covert imaging, surveillance and sensing.To succeed we will develop a new way of using state of the art photon detectors, computer controlled holograms and short pulse laser sources, while verifying the quantum aspects of our work will require a careful theoretical analysis.
Description This was a collaborative project with the Universities of Glasgow and Strathclyde. A great deal of useful research was achieved through this work, and it developed a a large number of fertile avenues of research were discovered. The groundwork for the UK Quantum Technology Hub in Quantum-Enhanced Imaging was formed in this project.
Exploitation Route The UK Quantum Technology Hub in Quantum-Enhanced Imaging is currently being used to link industry with this successful outcomes of this project.
Sectors Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Environment

Description EPSRC Quantum Technology Fellowship - Gerald Buller
Amount £1,418,014 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/N003446/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 07/2015 
End 06/2020
Description MoD Seeing Through Clouds
Amount £412,232 (GBP)
Funding ID DSTLX1000108233 
Organisation Defence Science & Technology Laboratory (DSTL) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 06/2016 
End 06/2018
Description UK Quantum Technology Hub in Quantum Enhanced Imaging
Amount £23,061,154 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/M01326X/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 12/2014 
End 11/2019