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A Description of imaging through lens using quantized EM field

  1. Mar 7, 2017 #1
    Usually the imaging through lens is described using geometrical optics or wave optics. However, I wish to study some imaging processes through lens where the light intensity is at the single photon level, under which condition I think the correct description should use a quantized electromagnetic (EM) field. To be more specific, I want to investigate the quantum mechanical measurement backaction of detection of single photons (at the image screen) back on the wave function of the atoms (on the object plane) emitting the photons. Are there some textbooks or research papers that gives a description of the imaging process of lens with the electromagnetic field quantized?
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2017
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  3. Mar 7, 2017 #2

    A. Neumaier

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    No. You only need to treat the classical intensity as a rate of photon impact in a classical stochastic process.

    The quantized field is needed only if you work with nonclassical light sources (squeezed states, parametric down-conversion, etc) , which is not the case for typical imaging processes.
     
  4. Mar 7, 2017 #3
    Sorry for not having been more specific. I fully agree if the intensity is the quantity of interest, classical treatment would suffice. But actually I want to investigate the quantum mechanical measurement backaction of detection of single photons at the image screen back on the wave function of the atoms on the object plane emitting the photons. So is it correct that a description using quantized electromagnetic field will be needed?
     
  5. Mar 7, 2017 #4

    A. Neumaier

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    This is a huge, probably untractable multiparticle problem since it is by no means clear which atom is responsible for the emission. I cannot imagine that this can be relvant for imaging purposes. (If you want to waste your time you can look at the book on quantum optics by Mandel and Wolf to see some of what is needed to model what you want.)
     
  6. Mar 7, 2017 #5
    Thanks for the recommendation. I am having in mind small bunch of atoms like in ultracold-atom experiments where a very small number of atoms are trapped and observed.
     
  7. Mar 7, 2017 #6

    A. Neumaier

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    Then what does it have to do with imaging?
     
  8. Mar 7, 2017 #7
    The atoms in
    The atoms in these ultracold experiments are observed by imaging the atoms through a lens so as to determine their position. This is a quite hot topic recently, called quantum gas microscope. For example cf. this paper: Bakr, Waseem S., et al. "A quantum gas microscope for detecting single atoms in a Hubbard-regime optical lattice." Nature 462.7269 (2009): 74-77. But the measurement backaction of imaging is less considered, and up to now never investigated experimentally according to my best knowledge. Though it seems that the technique is already adequate.
     
  9. Mar 8, 2017 #8

    A. Neumaier

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    Thanks; this gives enough context to discuss the matter. I'll come back to you after having looked more closely at the article.
     
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