Frequency-stabilised lasers are key enablers of quantum technologies, with many cold atom applications reliant on multiple lasers.

Quantum technology applications such as atomic clocks, magnetometers and gravitometers are now emerging from the laboratory and confronting the challenging size, weight, power, cost and reliability demands of the real-world.

As a participant in a number of Innovate UK supported quantum technology projects, Alter Technology UK has applied its telecoms and space-qualified packaging technologies to laser sources that enable the next generation of quantum technology devices.

The FLAME and REMOTE programmes are two examples of collaborative R&D projects supported by Innovate UK that are now spawning commercial products for Alter Technology UK.

In addition to the narrow linewidth diode laser modules Alter Technology UK, are also using our know-how in miniaturized and robust packaging for other Quantum devices and applications. The list below gives an overview of other Quantum related projects that Optocap have been involved in.

QUEST – Quantum Entangled Source for Quantum Communication

Quest-QKD is a feasibility study aimed at evaluating the potential of a device for the generation of entangled photons, targeting the emerging market of space quantum key distribution (QKD). Quantum key distribution (in some of its protocols) directly exploits entanglement to allow the secure share of a cryptographic key for information encoding.

The technical feasibility will be assessed by developing, testing and packaging a polarisation entanglement source. This will allow to precisely evaluate the resources needed for the eventual commercialisation of the device.

We are partnering with Fraunhofer Centre for Applied Photonics on this project.

SLAM – Squeezed Light Quantum MEMS Gravimeter

The University of Glasgow & QuantIC (Glasgow QT hub) have already demonstrated a high sensitivity miniaturised MEMS gravimeter able to sense the Earth tides. With this project, the device will see up to x40 improvement in performance via the development of an interferometric readout from the device using the superposition of light states inside a miniature vacuum package for thermal isolation of the sensor.

Market sectors for the technology include Oil& Gas, Defense & Security, Navigation & environmental monitoring, UK Hub network.

Alter Technology UK, is responsible for the packaging photonic integrated circuit (PIC) devices into miniaturised vacuum packages. We are working with the University of Glasgow and IQE in this project.

Single Ion Microtraps

The use of microfabricated ion traps coupled with scalable entanglement techniques facilitate advances in atomic clocks and quantum processors.

The aim of this development was to achieve a repeatable low cost, high volume design and repeatable sub-assembly process solution for a double-sided MEMS ion trap devices for use in UHV (ultra-high vacuum) applications.

We worked with Kelvin Nanotechnology and NPL on this project.

Alter Technology UK, Responsibilities:

  • Design and manufacture of a bespoke ITCC (Ion-Trap-Chip-Carrier) to hold a double-sided MEMS silicon chip.
  • Development of bespoke and scalable assembly processes.
  • Demonstrate confidence test data showing compliance to withstand UHV (ultra-high vacuum) application requirements.
  • Materials analysis and procurement.
  • Pilot assembly of assembly solution.

Contact us for more information

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