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Coexistent Quantum Channel Characterization Using Spectrally Resolved Bayesian Quantum Process Tomography

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Physical Review Applied
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The coexistence of quantum and classical signals over the same optical fiber with minimal degradation of the transmitted quantum information is critical for operating large-scale quantum networks over the existing communications infrastructure. Here, we systematically characterize the quantum channel that results from simultaneously distributing approximate single-photon polarization-encoded qubits and classical light of varying intensities through fiber-optic channels of up to 15 km. Using spectrally resolved quantum process tomography with a Bayesian reconstruction method that we develop, we estimate the full quantum channel from experimental photon counting data, both with and without classical background. Furthermore, although we find the exact channel description to be a weak function of the pump polarization, we nevertheless show that the coexistent fiber-based quantum channel has high process fidelity with an ideal depolarizing channel when the noise is dominated by Raman scattering. These results provide a basis for the future development of quantum repeater designs and quantum error-correcting codes for real-world channels and inform models used in the analysis and simulation of quantum networks.