Spin-bearing molecules are promising building blocks for quantum technologies as they can be chemically tuned, assembled into scalable arrays, and readily incorporated into diverse device architectures. In molecular systems, optically addressing ground-state spins would enable a wide range of applications in quantum information science, as has been demonstrated for solid-state defects. However, this important functionality has remained elusive for molecules. Here, we demonstrate such optical addressability in a series of synthesized organometallic, chromium(IV) molecules. These compounds display a ground-state spin that can be initialized and read out using light and coherently manipulated with microwaves. In addition, through atomistic modification of the molecular structure, we vary the spin and optical properties of these compounds, indicating promise for designer quantum systems synthesized from the bottom-up.
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