Raman Research Institute, Bengaluru, India

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We are at present concentrating on two broad themes of research.

1. Fundamental tests of quantum mechanics

Quantum mechanics is a cornerstone of modern physics. Just as the 19th century was called the Machine Age and the 20th century the Information Age, the 21st century promises to go down in history as the Quantum Age. However, can we really claim to fully understand quantum mechanical principles? How much do we really believe of what we know? Answers to such questions require us to revisit the fundamental postulates of quantum mechanics and perform precision theoretical and experimental investigations to come up with the right bounds. In our group, a part of our focus is to attempt such investigations using single light particles i.e. single photons as our tools. Such tests carry a lot of importance in the current theoretical physics scenario where a lot of importance is being given to unification of quantum mechanics and general relativity. Such unification attempts would also be benefited if one can have a more precise understanding of the principles involved in at least one of the theories i.e. quantum mechanics.

2. Quantum Information and Quantum Computation

The main thrust of our lab is research on aspects of quantum information and quantum computation. Our systems of choice are qutrits, based on spatial degrees of freedom of the single photon. Our lab is one of the first labs in the country to develop the technology of single photon sources based on spontaneous parametric down conversion in bulk non-linear crystals. We use the single photons and their various degrees of freedom to investigate aspects of quantum optics and quantum information.

Photons are massless, chargeless particles and as such perfect for communication purposes. In the near future, we wish to enter the domain of quantum communication and develop both terrestrial and satellite based technologies.