Low-noise amplification and frequency conversion with a multiport microwave optomechanical device

Research paper by C. F. Ockeloen-Korppi, E. Damskägg, J. -M. Pirkkalainen, T. T. Heikkilä, F. Massel, M. A. Sillanpää

Indexed on: 18 Feb '16Published on: 18 Feb '16Published in: Physics - Mesoscopic Systems and Quantum Hall Effect


High-gain amplifiers of electromagnetic signals operating near the quantum limit are crucial for quantum information systems and ultrasensitive quantum measurements. However, the existing techniques have a limited gain-bandwidth product and only operate with weak input signals. Here we demonstrate a two-port optomechanical scheme for amplification and routing of microwave signals, a system that simultaneously performs high-gain amplification and frequency conversion in the quantum regime. Our amplifier, implemented in a two-cavity microwave optomechanical device, shows 41 dB of gain and has a high dynamic range, handling input signals up to $10^{13}$ photons per second, three orders of magnitude more than corresponding Josephson parametric amplifiers. We show that although the active medium, the mechanical resonator, is at a high temperature far from the quantum limit, only 4.6 quanta of noise is added to the input signal. Our method can be readily applied to a wide variety of optomechanical systems, including hybrid optical-microwave systems, creating a universal hub for signals at the quantum level.