The simplest double slit: interference and entanglement in double photoionization of H2

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DOIResolve DOI: http://doi.org/10.1126/science.1144959
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TypeArticle
Journal titleScience
ISSN0036-8075
Volume318
Issue5852
Pages949952; # of pages: 4
AbstractThe wave nature of particles is rarely observed, in part because of their very short de Broglie wavelengths in most situations. However, even with wavelengths close to the size of their surroundings, the particles couple to their environment (for example, by gravity, Coulomb interaction, or thermal radiation). These couplings shift the wave phases, often in an uncontrolled way, and the resulting decoherence, or loss of phase integrity, is thought to be a main cause of the transition from quantum to classical behavior. How much interaction is needed to induce this transition? Here we show that a photoelectron and two protons form a minimum particle/slit system and that a single additional electron constitutes a minimum environment. Interference fringes observed in the angular distribution of a single electron are lost through its Coulomb interaction with a second electron, though the correlated momenta of the entangled electron pair continue to exhibit quantum interference.
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LanguageEnglish
Peer reviewedYes
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This is a non-NRC publication

"Non-NRC publications" are publications authored by NRC employees prior to their employment by NRC.

NPARC number21277215
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Record identifierc24cc067-3788-421a-97a4-d000a70ab7ee
Record created2016-01-13
Record modified2016-05-09
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