Entanglement between more than two hundred macroscopic atomic ensembles in a solid

Multiparty entanglement is generally fragile and difficult to quantify. Dicke states are multiparty entangled states where a single excitation is delocalized over many systems. Building on previous work on quantum memories for photons, we create a Dicke state in a solid by storing a single photon in a crystal that contains many large atomic ensembles with distinct resonance frequencies. We derive a lower bound for the number of entangled ensembles based on the contrast of the interference and the single-photon character of the input, and we experimentally demonstrate entanglement between over two hundred ensembles, each containing a billion atoms. We also illustrate the fact that each individual ensemble contains further entanglement.

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