Electro-optical sampling of single-cycle THz fields with single-photon detectors

Taylor Shields, Adetunmise C. Dada, Lennart Hirsch, Seungjin Yoon, Jonathan M. R. Weaver, Daniele Faccio, Lucia Caspani, Marco Peccianti, Matteo Clerici

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    Electro-optical sampling of Terahertz fields with ultrashort pulsed probes is a well-established approach for directly measuring the electric field of THz radiation. This technique usually relies on balanced detection to record the optical phase shift brought by THz-induced birefringence. The sensitivity of electro-optical sampling is, therefore, limited by the shot noise of the probe pulse, and improvements could be achieved using quantum metrology approaches using, e.g., NOON states for Heisenberg-limited phase estimation. We report on our experiments on THz electro-optical sampling using single-photon detectors and a weak squeezed vacuum field as the optical probe. Our approach achieves field sensitivity limited by the probe state statistical properties using phase-locked single-photon detectors and paves the way for further studies targeting quantum-enhanced THz sensing.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number9432
    Number of pages9
    JournalSensors (Basel, Switzerland)
    Issue number23
    Publication statusPublished - 2 Dec 2022


    • terahertz radiation
    • equipment design
    • terahertz wave photonics
    • terahertz spectroscopy
    • single-photon detection
    • electricity
    • photons


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