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Advanced active quenching circuit for ultra-fast quantum cryptography

Stipčević, Mario; Christensen, Brad G.; Kwiat, Paul G.; Gauthier, Daniel G. (2017) Advanced active quenching circuit for ultra-fast quantum cryptography. Optics Express, 25 (2). pp. 21861-21876. ISSN 1094-4087

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Abstract

Commercial photon-counting modules based on actively quenched solid-state avalanche photodiode sensors are used in a wide variety of applications. Manufacturers characterize their detectors by specifying a small set of parameters, such as detection efficiency, dead time, dark counts rate, afterpulsing probability and single-photon arrival-time resolution (jitter). However, they usually do not specify the range of conditions over which these parameters are constant or present a sufficient description of the characterization process. In this work, we perform a few novel tests on two commercial detectors and identify an additional set of imperfections that must be specified to sufficiently characterize their behavior. These include rate-dependence of the dead time and jitter, detection delay shift, and “twilighting”. We find that these additional non-ideal behaviors can lead to unexpected effects or strong deterioration of the performance of a system using these devices. We explain their origin by an in-depth analysis of the active quenching process. To mitigate the effects of these imperfections, a custom-built detection system is designed using a novel active quenching circuit. Its performance is compared against two commercial detectors in a fast quantum key distribution system with hyper- entangled photons and a random number generator.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Photon counting ; Avalanche photodiodes (APDs) ; Quantum cryptography ; Photodetectors ; Quantum detectors ; Quantum information and processing
Subjects: NATURAL SCIENCES > Physics
Divisions: Division of Experimental Physics
Depositing User: Mario Stipčević
Date Deposited: 21 Nov 2018 08:43
Last Modified: 21 Nov 2018 14:48
URI: http://fulir.irb.hr/id/eprint/4322
DOI: 10.1364/OE.25.021861

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