Quantum entanglement between spatially separated objects is one of the most intriguing phenomena in physics. The outcomes of independent measurements on entangled objects show correlations that cannot be explained by classical physics. As well as being of fundamental interest, entanglement is a unique resource for quantum information processing and communication. Entangled quantum bits (qubits) can be used to share private information or implement quantum logical gates. Such capabilities are particularly useful when the entangled qubits are spatially separated, providing the opportunity to create highly connected quantum networks or extend quantum cryptography to long distances. Here we report entanglement of two electron spin qubits in diamond with a spatial separation of three metres. We establish this entanglement using a robust protocol based on creation of spin-photon entanglement at each location and a subsequent joint measurement of the photons. Detection of the photons heralds the projection of the spin qubits onto an entangled state. We verify the resulting non-local quantum correlations by performing single-shot readout on the qubits in different bases. The long-distance entanglement reported here can be combined with recently achieved initialization, readout and entanglement operations on local long-lived nuclear spin registers, paving the way for deterministic long-distance teleportation, quantum repeaters and extended quantum networks.
ASJC Scopus subject areas