Quantum microwave photonics aims at generating, routing, and manipulating propagating quantum microwave fields in the spirit of optical photonics. To this end, the strong nonlinearitiesof superconducting quantum circuits can be used to either improve or move beyond the implementation of concepts from the optical domain. In this context, the design of a well-controlled broadband environment for the superconducting quantum circuits is a central task. In this work, we place a superconducting transmon qubit in one arm of an on-chip Mach-Zehnder interferometer composed of two superconducting microwave beam splitters. By measuring its relaxation and dephasing rates we use the qubit as a sensitive spectrometer at the quantum level to probe the broadband electromagnetic environment. At high frequencies, this environment can be well described by an ensemble of harmonic oscillators coupled to the transmon qubit. At low frequencies, we find experimental evidence for colored quasi-static Gaussian noise with a high spectral weight, as it is typical for ensembles of two-level fluctuators. Our work paves the way towards possible applications of propagating microwave photons, such as emulating quantum impurity models or a novel architecture for quantum information processing.

Two-mode squeezing is a fascinating example of quantum entanglement manifested in cross-correlations of incompatible observables between two subsystems. At the same time, these subsystemsthemselves may contain no quantum signatures in their self-correlations. These properties make two-mode squeezed (TMS) states an ideal resource for applications in quantum communication, quantum computation, and quantum illumination. Propagating microwave TMS states can be produced by a beam splitter distributing single mode squeezing emitted from Josephson parametric amplifiers (JPA) into two output paths. In this work, we experimentally quantify the dephasing process of quantum correlations in propagating TMS microwave states and accurately describe it with a theory model. In this way, we gain an insight into quantum entanglement limits and predict high fidelities for benchmark quantum communication protocols such as remote state preparation and quantum teleportation.

In quantum illumination entangled light is employed to enhance the detection accuracy of an object when compared with the best classical protocol. On the other hand, cloaking is a stealthtechnology based on covering a target with a material deflecting the light around the object to avoid its detection. Here, we propose a quantum illumination protocol especially adapted to quantum microwave technology which, by seizing weaknesses in current cloaking techniques, allows for a 3 dB improvement in the detection of a cloaked target. Finally, we study the minimal efficiency required by the photocounter for which the quantum illumination protocol still shows a gain with respect to the classical protocol.

Thermal microwave states are omnipresent noise sources in superconducting quantum circuits covering all relevant frequency regimes. We use them as a probe to identify three second-orderdecoherence mechanisms of a superconducting transmon. First, we quantify the efficiency of a resonator filter in the dispersive Jaynes-Cummings regime and find evidence for parasitic loss channels. Second, we probe second-order noise in the low-frequency regime and demonstrate the expected T3 temperature dependence of the qubit dephasing rate. Finally, we show that qubit parameter fluctuations due to two-level states are enhanced under the influence of thermal microwave states. In particular, we experimentally confirm the T2-dependence of the fluctuation spectrum expected for noninteracting two-level states.

In experiments with superconducting quantum circuits, characterizing the photon statistics of propagating microwave fields is a fundamental task. We quantify the n2+n photon numbervariance of thermal microwave photons emitted from a black-body radiator for mean photon numbers 0.05≲n≲1.5. We probe the fields using either correlation measurements or a transmon qubit coupled to a microwave resonator. Our experiments provide a precise quantitative characterization of weak microwave states and information on the noise emitted by a Josephson parametric amplifier.

Memristors are resistive elements retaining information of their past dynamics. They have garnered substantial interest due to their potential for representing a paradigm change inelectronics, information processing and unconventional computing. Given the advent of quantum technologies, a design for a quantum memristor with superconducting circuits may be envisaged. Along these lines, we introduce such a quantum device whose memristive behavior arises from quasiparticle-induced tunneling when supercurrents are cancelled. For realistic parameters, we find that the relevant hysteretic behavior may be observed using current state-of-the-art measurements of the phase-driven tunneling current. Finally, we develop adequate methods to quantify the memory retention in this system.

Displacement of propagating quantum states of light is a fundamental operation for quantum communication. It enables fundamental studies on macroscopic quantum coherence and plays animportant role in quantum teleportation protocols with continuous variables. In our experiments we have successfully implemented this operation for propagating squeezed microwave states. We demonstrate that, even for strong displacement amplitudes, there is no degradation of the squeezing level in the reconstructed quantum states. Furthermore, we confirm that path entanglement generated by using displaced squeezed states stays constant over a wide range of the displacement power.

We realize tunable coupling between two superconducting transmission line resonators. The coupling is mediated by a non-hysteretic rf SQUID acting as a flux-tunable mutual inductancebetween the resonators. From the mode distance observed in spectroscopy experiments, we derive a coupling strength ranging between -320MHz and 37 MHz. In the case where the coupling strength is about zero, the microwave power cross transmission between the two resonators can be reduced by almost four orders of magnitude compared to the case where the coupling is switched on. In addition, we observe parametric amplification by applying a suitable additional drive tone.

Propagating quantum microwaves have been proposed and successfully implemented to generate entanglement, thereby establishing a promising platform for the realisation of a quantum communicationchannel. However, the implementation of quantum teleportation with photons in the microwave regime is still absent. At the same time, recent developments in the field show that this key protocol could be feasible with current technology, which would pave the way to boost the field of microwave quantum communication. Here, we discuss the feasibility of a possible implementation of microwave quantum teleportation in a realistic scenario with losses. Furthermore, we propose how to implement quantum repeaters in the microwave regime without using photodetection, a key prerequisite to achieve long distance entanglement distribution.

We report on ultrastrong coupling between a superconducting flux qubit and a resonant mode of a system comprised of two superconducting coplanar stripline resonators coupled galvanicallyto the qubit. With a coupling strength as high as 17% of the mode frequency, exceeding that of previous circuit quantum electrodynamics experiments, we observe a pronounced Bloch-Siegert shift. The spectroscopic response of our multimode system reveals a clear breakdown of the Jaynes-Cummings model. In contrast to earlier experiments, the high coupling strength is achieved without making use of an additional inductance provided by a Josephson junction.