Spontaneous parametric down-conversion photon sources are scalable in the asymptotic limit for boson sampling

Keith R. Motes*, Jonathan P. Dowling, Peter P. Rohde

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    31 Citations (Scopus)


    Boson sampling has emerged as a promising avenue towards postclassical optical quantum computation, and numerous elementary demonstrations have recently been performed. Spontaneous parametric down-conversion (SPDC) is the mainstay for single-photon state preparation, the technique employed in most optical quantum information processing implementations to date. Here we present a simple architecture for boson sampling based on multiplexed SPDC sources and demonstrate that the architecture is limited only by the postselection detection efficiency assuming that other errors, such as spectral impurity, dark counts, and interferometric instability, are negligible. For any given number of input photons, there exists a minimum detector efficiency that allows postselection. If this efficiency is achieved, photon-number errors in the SPDC sources are sufficiently low as to guarantee correct boson sampling most of the time. In this scheme, the required detector efficiency must increase exponentially in the photon number. Thus, we show that idealized SPDC sources will not present a bottleneck for future boson-sampling implementations. Rather, photodetection efficiency is the limiting factor, and thus, future implementations may continue to employ SPDC sources.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number063822
    Pages (from-to)1-5
    Number of pages5
    JournalPhysical Review A - Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 10 Dec 2013


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