Strong laser physics, non-classical light states and quantum information science

Strong–laser–field physics is a research direction that relies on the use of high-power lasers and has led to fascinating achievements ranging from relativistic particle acceleration to attosecond science. On the other hand, quantum optics has been built on the use of low photon number sources and has opened the way for groundbreaking discoveries in quantum technology, advancing investigations ranging from fundamental tests of quantum theory to quantum information processing. Despite the tremendous progress, until recently these directions have remained disconnected. This is because the majority of the interactions in the strong-field limit have been successfully described by semi-classical approximations treating the electromagnetic field classically, as there was no need to include the quantum properties of the field to explain the observations. The link between strong–laser–field physics, quantum optics, and quantum information science has been developed in the recent past. Studies based on fully quantized and conditioning approaches have shown that intense laser–matter interactions can be used for the generation of controllable entangled and non-classical light states. These achievements open the way for a vast number of investigations stemming from the symbiosis of strong–laser–field physics, quantum optics, and quantum information science. Here, after an introduction to the fundamentals of these research directions, we report on the recent progress in the fully quantized description of intense laser–matter interaction and the methods that have been developed for the generation of non-classical light states and entangled states. Also, we discuss the future directions of non-classical light engineering using strong laser fields, and the potential applications in ultrafast and quantum information science.