We investigate in the framework of quantum noise theory how the striking boundary sensitivity recently discovered in the context of non-Hermitian (NH) topological phases may be harnessed to devise novel quantum sensors. Specifically, we study a quantum-optical setting of coupled modes arranged in an array with broken ring geometry that would realize a NH topological phase in the classical limit. Using methods from quantum-information theory of Gaussian states, we show that a small coupling induced between the ends of the broken ring may be detected with a precision that increases exponentially in the number of coupled modes, e.g., by heterodyne detection of two output modes. While this robust effect only relies on reaching a NH topological regime, we identify a resonance phenomenon without direct classical counterpart that provides an experimental knob for drastically enhancing the aforementioned exponential growth. Our findings pave the way towards designing quantum NH topological sensors that may observe with high precision any physical observable that couples to the boundary conditions of the device.
|Journal||Physical Review Research|
|Publication status||Published - 11 Feb 2022|