Question about double slit experiment

  • #1

Main Question or Discussion Point

I have a question about the double split experiment, don't know if it's been asked before...

Specifically, I have read and watched in some videos explaining that, when shooting electrons, physicists decided to shoot 'one electron at a time', to make sure they are not interfering with each other. That is, you 'shoot' an electron, and wait until it hits the screen before you shoot another.

I've got 2 questions on this, and I hope they can be answered by someone that has actually witnessed such an experiement, or even better performed it.

1)Can you really 'shoot one electron at a time'? My knowledge is not much, but that seems a bit...impossible. Being able to isolate one electron and direct it towards the screen? I would think that it would be possible for short directed pulses of electrons, but ONE electron? Is it true, can that be physically accomplished in a lab?

2)IF I'm correct and they direct short pulses of electrons, can some portion of the pulse go through one slit and some portion of the same pulse go through another? Again, if I'm correct about my first assessment. I realize this is a bit of an 'easy' question to ask, just want to make sure because I haven't really been able to explain that to myself.

Thanks!
 
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Answers and Replies

  • #2
255
19
Here you go Woodie, this will make your brain hurt, but should give you some idea of what is going on with this subject.

http://iopscience.iop.org/1742-6596/88/1/012020

There isn't even a $45 charge for downloading the PDF.

I must thank you profusely for asking this question as it prompted me to use a particular search phrase. That, with more than a little luck, finally gave me an recent example of someone actually doing a real experiment in this area. Been having trouble finding one to say the least.

According to this paper apparently no one had been able (see below though) to produce a double slit small enough for the experiment, not to mention producing single electrons to use with the slit. I think you will find several references to single electrons in "solid state" type devices, but none, as they say, in vacuum to go through real physical slits.

As you can see, they use a considerably different method.

Look around here there are several references to an Italian experiment that uses a really small double slit with continuous electron flow.


DC
 
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  • #3
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Would you be happy with a (fairly simple) one PHOTON at a time source?

http://www.teachspin.com/brochures/Two%20Slit.pdf [Broken]

This was provided for me in another thread in response to a request about path photon detectors. Pretty cool little box.

Thank you, ThomasT

DC
 
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  • #4
DarioC, thanks a bunch for all the excellent info! You've been a great help man, much appreciated! I'm going through the docs right now, hoping I'll get something out of them. :)
 

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