- Conference date: 19–23 July 2010
- Location: Brisbane, (Australia)
Loss and noise quickly destroy quantum entanglement. Nevertheless, recent work has shown that a quadrature‐entangled light source can reap a substantial performance advantage over all classical‐state sources of the same average transmitter power in scenarios whose loss and noise makes them entanglement breaking [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6], standoff target‐detection being an example. In this paper, we make a first step in extending this quantum illumination paradigm to the optical imaging domain, viz., to obtain better spatial resolution for standoff optical sensing. Our canonical imaging scenario—restricted, for simplicity, to one transverse dimension—is taken to be that of resolving one versus two closely‐spaced in‐phase specular point targets. We show that an entangled‐state transmitter, which uses continuous‐wave‐pumped spontaneous parametric downconversion (SPDC), achieves an error‐probability exponent that exceeds that of all classical‐state transmitters of the same average power. Using these error‐exponent results, we find the ultimate spatial‐resolution limits for coherent‐state and SPDC imaging systems that use their respective quantum‐optimal receivers, thus quantifying the latter’s spatial‐resolution advantage over the former. We also propose a structured optical receiver that is ideally capable of harnessing 3 dB (of the full 6 dB) gain in the error‐probability exponent achievable by the SPDC transmitter and its quantum‐optimal receiver.
- Quantum entanglement
- Coherence imaging
- Optical imaging
- Optical receivers
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