Electrically driven single-photon generation at room temperature is reported in Nature Photonics this week. The work could help realize practical quantum communications schemes such as quantum cryptography and quantum computing.
Today’s single-photon-generating schemes are either optically driven at room temperature or electrically driven at cryogenic temperatures. Norikazu Mizuochi and colleagues achieve the best of both - room-temperature electrically driven operation - by exploiting an impurity-free region in a diamond diode. The device is capable of generating 40,000 photons per second at an injection current of 14 milliamperes, which is comparable to the driving current of commercially available light-emitting diodes.