Photon-number-resolving (PNR) detection is a prerequisite for many important quantum optics applications. By using a four-channel superconducting nanowire single-photon detection system incorporating the photon multiport network technique, PNR detection of up to four photons was realized. The amplitude of the output pulse is proportional to the detected photon number. Using two channels of the system, the Poisson distribution of photon number in the faint pulsed laser was verified. The theoretical counts of the two-photon response were analyzed as a function of the mean photon number per pulse. The measurement results matched well with the theoretical calculations according to the Poisson distribution.
© 2014 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: September 11, 2013
Revised Manuscript: December 11, 2013
Manuscript Accepted: January 8, 2014
Published: March 17, 2014
Dengkuan Liu, Lixing You, Yuhao He, Chaolin Lv, Sijing Chen, Ling Zhang, Zhen Wang, and Xiaoming Xie, "Photon-number resolving and distribution verification using a multichannel superconducting nanowire single-photon detection system," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 31, 816-820 (2014)