Dressed photon-orbital states in a quantum dot: Intervalley spin resonance

P. Scarlino, E. Kawakami, T. Jullien, D. R. Ward, D. E. Savage, M. G. Lagally, Mark Friesen, S. N. Coppersmith, M. A. Eriksson, L. M.K. Vandersypen

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24 Citations (Scopus)


The valley degree of freedom is intrinsic to spin qubits in Si/SiGe quantum dots. It has been viewed alternately as a hazard, especially when the lowest valley-orbit splitting is small compared to the thermal energy, or as an asset, most prominently in proposals to use the valley degree of freedom itself as a qubit. Here we present experiments in which microwave electric field driving induces transitions between both valley-orbit and spin states. We show that this system is highly nonlinear and can be understood through the use of dressed photon-orbital states, enabling a unified understanding of the six microwave resonance lines we observe. Some of these resonances are intervalley spin transitions that arise from a nonadiabatic process in which both the valley and the spin degree of freedom are excited simultaneously. For these transitions, involving a change in valley-orbit state, we find a tenfold increase in sensitivity to electric fields and electrical noise compared to pure spin transitions, strongly reducing the phase coherence when changes in valley-orbit index are incurred. In contrast to this nonadiabatic transition, the pure spin transitions, whether arising from harmonic or subharmonic generation, are shown to be adiabatic in the orbital sector. The nonlinearity of the system is most strikingly manifest in the observation of a dynamical anticrossing between a spin-flip, intervalley transition and a three-photon transition enabled by the strong nonlinearity we find in this seemly simple system.

Original languageEnglish
Article number165429
JournalPhysical Review X
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - 19 Apr 2017

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