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Durham Seminar, Wednesday 6 March 2019

12:00 - 13:00

CG 60

Alexander Lvovsky

Schrödinger cats in quantum optics

Schrödinger's famous Gedanken experiment has inspired multiple generations of physicists to think about apparent paradoxes that arise when the logic of quantum physics is applied to macroscopic objects. The development of quantum technologies enabled us to produce physical analogues of Schrödinger's cats, such as superpositions of macroscopically distinct states as well as entangled states of microscopic and macroscopic entities. The optical incarnation of Schrödinger's cat – the superposition of two opposite-amplitude coherent states – is also the backbone of quantum information processing in the continuous-variable domain. I will show how we prepare these states, increase their amplitudes, and use them to encode and exchange quantum information. I will also discuss how Schrödinger's cats can be useful in solving one of the big mysteries of modern physics: the validity limits of quantum mechanics in application to microscopic states.