Exploring the Quantum: Atoms, Cavities, and Photons
The counter-intuitive aspects of quantum physics have been for long illustrated by thought experiments, from Einstein's photon box to Schrödinger's cat. These experiments have now become real, with single particles - electrons, atoms or photons - directly unveiling the weird features of the quantum. State superpositions, entanglement and complementarity define a novel quantum logic which can be harnessed for information processing, raising great hopes for applications. This book describes a class of such thought experiments made real. Juggling with atoms and photons confined in cavities, ions or cold atoms in traps, is here an incentive to shed a new light on the basic concepts of quantum physics. Measurement processes and decoherence at the quantum-classical boundary are highlighted. This volume, which combines theory and experiments, will be of interest to students in quantum physics, teachers seeking illustrations for their lectures and new problem sets, researchers in quantum optics and quantum information.
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