Lifetime-Limited and Tunable Quantum Light Emission in h-BN via Electric Field Modulation

Hamidreza Akbari, Souvik Biswas, Pankaj Kumar Jha, Joeson Wong, Benjamin Vest, Harry A. Atwater

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Color-center-based single-photon emitters in hexagonal boron nitride (h-BN) have shown promising photophysical properties as sources for quantum light emission. Despite significant advances toward such a goal, achieving lifetime-limited quantum light emission in h-BN has proven to be challenging, primarily due to various broadening mechanisms, including spectral diffusion. Here, we propose and experimentally demonstrate suppression of spectral diffusion by applying an electrostatic field. We observe both Stark shift tuning of the resonant emission wavelength and emission line width reduction (down to 89 MHz) nearly to the homogeneously broadened lifetime limit. Finally, we find a cubic dependence of the line width with respect to temperature at the homogeneous broadening regime. Our results suggest that field tuning in electrostatically gated heterostructures is promising as an approach to control the emission characteristics of h-BN color centers, removing spectral diffusion and providing the energy tunability necessary for integrate of quantum light emission in nanophotonic architectures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7798-7803
Number of pages6
JournalNano Letters
Issue number19
StatePublished - Oct 12 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • electric field
  • hexagonal boron nitride
  • lifetime-limited
  • single-photon emitter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering


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