Observing controlled state collapse in a single mechanical oscillator via a direct probe of energy variance

Gangat, A. A. (2013) Observing controlled state collapse in a single mechanical oscillator via a direct probe of energy variance. Physical Review A: Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics, 88 6: 063846-1-063846-8. doi:10.1103/PhysRevA.88.063846

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Author Gangat, A. A.
Title Observing controlled state collapse in a single mechanical oscillator via a direct probe of energy variance
Journal name Physical Review A: Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1050-2947
Publication date 2013-12-27
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1103/PhysRevA.88.063846
Open Access Status File (Publisher version)
Volume 88
Issue 6
Start page 063846-1
End page 063846-8
Total pages 8
Place of publication College Park, MD, United States
Publisher American Physical Society
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Due to their central role in our classical intuition of the physical world and their potential for interacting with the gravitational field, mechanical degrees of freedom are of special interest in testing the nonclassical predictions of quantum theory at ever larger scales. The projection postulate of quantum theory predicts that, for certain types of measurements, continuously measuring a system induces a stochastic collapse of the state of the system toward a random eigenstate. Here we propose an optomechanical scheme to observe this fundamental effect in a vibrational mode of a mechanical membrane. The observation in the scheme is direct (it is not inferred via an a priori assumption of the projection postulate for the mechanical mode) and is made possible through an in situ probe of the mechanical energy variance. In the scheme, quantum theory predicts that a steady state is reached as the measurement-induced collapse is counteracted by dissipation to the unmonitored environment. Numerical simulations show this to result in a monotonic decrease in the time-averaged energy variance as the ratio of continuous measurement strength to dissipation is increased. The measurement strength in the proposed scheme is tunable in situ, and the behavior predicted by the simulations therefore implies a way to verifiably control the time-averaged variance of a mechanical wave function over the course of a single quantum trajectory. The scheme's ability to directly probe the energy variance of the mechanical mode may also enable further investigations of the effects on the mechanical state of coupling the mechanical mode to other quantum systems.
Keyword Optomechanics
Quantum optics
Quantum measurement
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: School of Mathematics and Physics
Official 2014 Collection
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 2 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 2 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Tue, 07 Jan 2014, 07:20:40 EST by Adil Gangat on behalf of Engineered Quantum Systems