The famous "black box" problem, relevant to many fields of science and engineering, is also important in the context of quantum information processing, particularly for quantum memory. This is because practical application of any such memory requires the ability to predict the retrieved state for any arbitrary input. This knowledge is acquired through quantum process tomography - a procedure in which certain "probe" states are stored, and the corresponding retrieved states are measured. Surprisingly, quantum memory for light - or any other "black boxes" that process quantum optical information - can be completely characterized using coherent states, i.e. simple laser pulses, as the probe states. We shall discuss the theory of this procedure as well as a few examples of its practical implementation.
Alexander received his B. S. in Physics and Applied Physics at the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology in 1993. He then went on to do an M. A. and M. Phil. in Physics at Columbia University in New York City, finishing his program in 1996. In 1998 Alexander completed his Ph. D. at Columbia under the supervision of Dr. Sven R. Hartmann, having conducted experimental studies of coherent optical transients in atomic gases and having discovered and investigated the phenomena of omnidirectional yoked superfluorescent photon echo. After his Ph. D. he spent a year at the University of California, Berkeley as a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Physics, and then took a position as an Alexander von Humboldt postdoctoral fellow at the Universitat Konstanz in Germany. Following this fellowship, he became a Group Leader in Quantum-optical information technology at the Universitat Konstanz until 2004, when he accepted the position of Associate Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Calgary, where he remains today.
Dr. Lvovsky is a Tier II Canada Research Chair, a lifetime member of the American Physical Society and the winner of many awards – most notably the Alberta Ingenuity New Faculty award and the Emmy Noether research award of the German Science Foundation. He is also a referee for many scientific journals. At the University of Calgary Alexander conducts wide-profile experimental and theoretical research on synthesis, manipulation, measurement and storage of quantum information carried by light for applications in quantum information technology.