Young's double-slit interferometry within an atom
Michael W. Noel and C. R. Stroud, Jr.
Phys. Rev. Lett. 75, 1252 (1995).
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An experiment is described which is an analog of Young's double-slit
interferometer using an atomic electron instead of light. Two
phase-coherent laser pulses are used to excite a single electron into a
state of the form of a pair of Rydberg wave packets that are initially on
opposite sides of the orbit. The two wave packets propagate and spread
until they completely overlap, then a third phase-coherent laser pulse
probes the resulting fringe pattern. The relative phase of the two wave
packets is varied so that the interference produces a single localized
electron wave packet on one side of the orbit or the other.
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