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Topological dissipation in a time-multiplexed photonic resonator network

Leefmans, Christian and Dutt, Avik and Williams, James and Yuan, Luqi and Parto, Midya and Nori, Franco and Fan, Shanhui and Marandi, Alireza (2022) Topological dissipation in a time-multiplexed photonic resonator network. Nature Physics, 18 (4). pp. 442-449. ISSN 1745-2473. doi:10.1038/s41567-021-01492-w.

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Topological phases feature robust edge states that are protected against the effects of defects and disorder. These phases have largely been studied in conservatively coupled systems, in which non-trivial topological invariants arise in the energy or frequency bands of a system. Here we show that, in dissipatively coupled systems, non-trivial topological invariants can emerge purely in a system’s dissipation. Using a highly scalable and easily reconfigurable time-multiplexed photonic resonator network, we experimentally demonstrate one- and two-dimensional lattices that host robust topological edge states with isolated dissipation rates, measure a dissipation spectrum that possesses a non-trivial topological invariant, and demonst rate topological protection of the network’s quality factor. The topologically non-trivial dissipation of our system exposes new opportunities to engineer dissipation in both classical and quantum systems. Moreover, our experimental platform’s straightforward scaling to higher dimensions and its ability to implement inhomogeneous, non-reciprocal and long range couplings may enable future work in the study of synthetic dimensions.

Item Type:Article
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URLURL TypeDescription ReadCube access Paper
Dutt, Avik0000-0002-6064-4356
Yuan, Luqi0000-0001-9481-0247
Parto, Midya0000-0003-2100-5671
Nori, Franco0000-0003-3682-7432
Fan, Shanhui0000-0002-0081-9732
Marandi, Alireza0000-0002-0470-0050
Additional Information:© 2022 Nature Publishing Group. Received 13 July 2021; Accepted 10 December 2021; Published 14 February 2022. We are grateful to M. Fraser and A. Szameit for their insights. We acknowledge support from ARO grant no. W911NF-18-1-0285 and NSF grant nos. 1846273 and 1918549. S.F. acknowledges support of a Vannevar Bush Faculty Fellowship from the US Department of Defense (grant no. N00014-17-1-3030). L.Y. acknowledges support of the National Natural Science Foundation of China (11974245). F.N. acknowledges support from ARO (W911NF-18-1-0358), JST-CREST (JPMJCR1676), JSPS (JP20H00134), AOARD (FA2386-20-1-4069) and FQXi (FQXi-IAF19-06). We wish to thank NTT Research for their financial and technical support. Data availability: The data used to generate the plots and results in this paper is available on the Caltech Research Data Repository ( Source data are provided with this paper. All other data that support the findings of this study are available from the corresponding author upon reasonable request. Code availability: The code used to analyse and plot the data in this paper is available on the Caltech Research Data Repository ( The other code supporting the findings of this study is available from the corresponding author upon reasonable request. Author Contributions: These authors contributed equally: Christian Leefmans, Avik Dutt. C.L., A.D. and A.M. devised the experiments and the underlying theory. C.L., A.D. and J.W. constructed and performed the experiments. C.L. collected and analysed the data. M.P. contributed to the theoretical analysis. L.Y. conceived the experiment. S.F. and F.N. provided additional insights and guidance. All the authors discussed the results and contributed to the writing of the manuscript. A.M. supervised the project. The authors declare no competing interests. Peer review information: Nature Physics thanks Yaakov Lumer and the other, anonymous, reviewer(s) for their contribution to the peer review of this work.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Army Research Office (ARO)W911NF18-1-0285
Vannevar Bush Faculty FellowshipUNSPECIFIED
Office of Naval Research (ONR)N00014-17-1-3030
National Natural Science Foundation of China11974245
Army Research Office (ARO)W911NF-18-1-0358
Japan Science and Technology AgencyJPMJCR1676
Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS)JP20H00134
Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR)FA2386-20-1-4069
Foundational Questions Institute (FQXI)FQXi-IAF19-06
Subject Keywords:Applied physics; Condensed-matter physics; Optical physics; Quantum optics
Issue or Number:4
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20211207-190135847
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Official Citation:Leefmans, C., Dutt, A., Williams, J. et al. Topological dissipation in a time-multiplexed photonic resonator network. Nat. Phys. 18, 442–449 (2022).
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:112245
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:07 Dec 2021 20:09
Last Modified:12 Apr 2022 16:28

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