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New article by grad student Tom Smith and Dr. Shih

February 13, 2018 1:19 PM
“Turbulence-Free Double-slit Interferometer”

Thomas A. Smith and Yanhua Shih

Phys. Rev. Lett. 120, 063606 – Published 8 February 2018


Abstract: Optical turbulence can be detrimental for optical observations. For instance, atmospheric turbulence may reduce the visibility or completely blur out the interference produced by an interferometer in open air. However, a simple two-photon interference theory based on Einstein’s granularity picture of light makes a turbulence-free interferometer possible; i.e., any refraction index, length, or phase variations along the optical paths of the interferometer do not have any effect on its interference. Applying this mechanism, the reported experiment demonstrates a two-photon double-slit interference that is insensitive to atmospheric turbulence. The turbulence-free mechanism and especially the turbulence-free interferometer would be helpful in optical observations that require high sensitivity and stability such as for gravitational-wave detection.

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