Abstract

We propose two experimental schemes for concentrating entanglement in unknown partially entangled three-photon W states with only linear optical elements and the conventional photon detectors. We first propose a heralded scheme using a heralded controlled-NOT (CNOT) gate between two photons. Then we simplify this method to a post-selected one requiring time entanglement of the input photons without using ancillary photons. In the two schemes, Alice, Bob, and Charlie at three distant parties can obtain one maximally entangled three-photon W state from two identical partially entangled three-photon W states, taking the specific form of α|H|H|V+β(|H|V|H+|V|H|H), by local operations and classical communication. We discuss and consider the success probabilities and the practical realizations of the schemes.

© 2010 Optical Society of America

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