Publication: Research - peer-review › Journal article – Annual report year: 2010
Observables of quantum systems can possess either a discrete or a continuous spectrum. For example, upon measurements of the photon number of a light state, discrete outcomes will result whereas measurements of the light's quadrature amplitudes result in continuous outcomes. If one uses the continuous degree of freedom of a quantum system for encoding, processing or detecting information, one enters the field of continuous-variable (CV) quantum information processing. In this paper we review the basic principles of CV quantum information processing with main focus on recent developments in the field. We will be addressing the three main stages of a quantum information system; the preparation stage where quantum information is encoded into CVs of coherent states and single-photon states, the processing stage where CV information is manipulated to carry out a specified protocol and a detection stage where CV information is measured using homodyne detection or photon counting.
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