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A triggering device sensitive to a single photon is discussed. It is based on a balanced quantum nondemolition (QND) measurement proposed by Chuang and Yamamoto [Phys. Rev. Lett. 76, 4281 (1996)]. The balanced measurement measures the total photon number and obtains no which-path/mode information. Hence, the timing of the photon can be determined without destroying its wave function or entangling the probe field. This could have extensive use in the realization of long-distance quantum communications systems.


This article was originally published in Physical Review A, volume 62, issue 3, in 2000.

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American Physical Society

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