Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Entangled atoms shine in unison

15.05.2018

A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.

The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible today to exploit quantum properties specifically for technical applications.


Physicists compared the photon interference produced by entangled and non-entangled barium atoms.

IQOQI Innsbruck/Harald Ritsch

The team led by the Innsbruck quantum computer pioneer Rainer Blatt controls individual atoms very precisely in experiments with ion traps. The deliberate entanglement of these quantum particles not only opens up the possibility of building a quantum computer, but also creates the basis for the measurement of physical properties with previously unknown precision.

The physicists have now succeeded for the first time in demonstrating fully-controlled free-space quantum interference of single photons emitted by a pair of effectively-separated entangled atoms.

Sensitive measurements

"Today, we can very precisely control the position and entanglement of particles and generate single photons as needed," explains Gabriel Araneda from Rainer Blatt's team from the Department of Experimental Physics at the University of Innsbruck. "Together, this allows us to investigate the effects of entanglement in the collective atom-light interaction."

The physicists at the University of Innsbruck compared the photon interference produced by entangled and non-entangled barium atoms. The measurements showed that these are qualitatively different. In fact, the measured difference of the interference fringes directly corresponds to the amount of entanglement in the atoms.

"In this way we can characterize the entanglement fully optically," Gabriel Araneda emphasizes the significance of the experiment. The physicists were also able to demonstrate that the interference signal is highly sensitive to environmental factors at the location of the atoms. "We take advantage of this sensitivity and use the observed interference signal to measure magnetic field gradients," says Araneda.

This technique may lead to the development of ultra-sensitive optical gradiometers. As the measured effect does not rely in the proximity of the atoms, these measurements could allow to precisely compare field strengths at separated locations, such as that of the Earth's magnetic or gravitational fields.

The work was published in the journal Physical Review Letters and was financially supported by the Austrian Science Fund FWF, the European Union and the Federation of Austrian Industries Tyrol, among others.

Publication: Interference of single photons emitted by entangled atoms in free space. Gabriel Araneda, Daniel B. Higginbottom, Lukáš Slodička, Yves Colombe, Rainer Blatt. Phys. Rev. Lett. 120, 193603 DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.120.193603

Contact:
Gabriel Araneda
Department of Experimental Physics
University of Innsbruck
phone: +43 512 507 52472
email: Gabriel.Araneda-Machuca@uibk.ac.at
web: https://quantumoptics.at

Christian Flatz
Public Relations
University of Innsbruck
phone: +43 512 507 32022
email: christian.flatz@uibk.ac.at
web: https://www.uibk.ac.at

Weitere Informationen:

https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.120.193603 - Interference of single photons emitted by entangled atoms in free space. Gabriel Araneda, Daniel B. Higginbottom, Lukáš Slodička, Yves Colombe, Rainer Blatt. Phys. Rev. Lett. 120, 193603
https://quantumoptics.at - Quantum Optics and Spectroscopy group

Dr. Christian Flatz | Universität Innsbruck

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht First radio detection of an extrasolar planetary system around a main-sequence star
04.08.2020 | Max-Planck-Institut für Radioastronomie

nachricht The art of making tiny holes
04.08.2020 | Vienna University of Technology

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: AI & single-cell genomics

New software predicts cell fate

Traditional single-cell sequencing methods help to reveal insights about cellular differences and functions - but they do this with static snapshots only...

Im Focus: TU Graz Researchers synthesize nanoparticles tailored for special applications

“Core-shell” clusters pave the way for new efficient nanomaterials that make catalysts, magnetic and laser sensors or measuring devices for detecting electromagnetic radiation more efficient.

Whether in innovative high-tech materials, more powerful computer chips, pharmaceuticals or in the field of renewable energies, nanoparticles – smallest...

Im Focus: Tailored light inspired by nature

An international research team with Prof. Cornelia Denz from the Institute of Applied Physics at the University of Münster develop for the first time light fields using caustics that do not change during propagation. With the new method, the physicists cleverly exploit light structures that can be seen in rainbows or when light is transmitted through drinking glasses.

Modern applications as high resolution microsopy or micro- or nanoscale material processing require customized laser beams that do not change during...

Im Focus: NYUAD astrophysicist investigates the possibility of life below the surface of Mars

  • A rover expected to explore below the surface of Mars in 2022 has the potential to provide more insights
  • The findings published in Scientific Reports, Springer Nature suggests the presence of traces of water on Mars, raising the question of the possibility of a life-supporting environment

Although no life has been detected on the Martian surface, a new study from astrophysicist and research scientist at the Center for Space Science at NYU Abu...

Im Focus: Manipulating non-magnetic atoms in a chromium halide enables tuning of magnetic properties

New approach creates synthetic layered magnets with unprecedented level of control over their magnetic properties

The magnetic properties of a chromium halide can be tuned by manipulating the non-magnetic atoms in the material, a team, led by Boston College researchers,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

“Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP 2020”: The final touches for surfaces

23.07.2020 | Event News

Conference radar for cybersecurity

21.07.2020 | Event News

Contact Tracing Apps against COVID-19: German National Academy Leopoldina hosts international virtual panel discussion

07.07.2020 | Event News

 
Latest News

First radio detection of an extrasolar planetary system around a main-sequence star

04.08.2020 | Physics and Astronomy

The art of making tiny holes

04.08.2020 | Physics and Astronomy

Early Mars was covered in ice sheets, not flowing rivers

04.08.2020 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>