Abstract

Quantum random walks (QRWs) are random processes in which the resulting probability density of the “walker” state, whose movement is governed by a “coin” state, is described in a nonclassical manner. Previously, Q-plates have been used to demonstrate QRWs with polarization and orbital angular momentum playing the roles of coin and walker states, respectively. In this theoretical analysis, we show how stress-engineered optics can be used to develop new platforms for complex QRWs through relatively simple optical elements. Our work opens up new paths to speed up classical-to-quantum transitions in robust photonic networks.

© 2019 Optical Society of America

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