The birth of quantum holography: we have a hologram particles light!

Execution of a single hologram of a photon was previously impossible due to reasons physically fundamental. Researchers from the Physics Department at the University of Warsaw has succeeded, in the original way to move ideas classic holography into the world of quantum phenomena.New measuring technology not only allowed the registration of the first hologram single particles of light, but also allowed in a new way to look at the foundations of quantum mechanics.

The Faculty of Physics of the University of Warsaw (FUW) made the first hologram single particles of light. Spectacular experiment, described in the prestigious journal Nature Photonics”, conducted by Dr. Radosław Chrapkiewicz and mgr Michał Jachura under the direction of Dr. HAB. Wojciech Wasilewski and Prof. Dr. HAB. Konrad Banaszka. Registration of hologram marks the beginning of a new kind of a photon holography: holography, quantum, which reveals a new view on the world of quantum phenomena.

quantum phenomena
Hologram of a single photon: reconstructed from raw measurements (left) and theoretically predicted (right). (Source: FUW, Warsaw University of Science)

“In a relatively simple experiment we have measured and we saw something that spot is very difficult: the shape of the wave fronts of a single photon”, says Dr. Radosław Chrapkiewicz.

The standard of photography in the individual sections of the image it records only the intensity of the light. In classical holography with the phenomenon of interference saves also a phase of light wave (this is phase brings about the depth of the images).

quantum light phenomena
Scheme of the experimental setup for measuring holograms of single photons at the Faculty of Physics, University of Warsaw. (The experiment started with a pair of photons with flat wave-fronts and perpendicular polarization. The different polarization made it possible to separate the photons in a crystal and make one of them ‘unknown’ by curving their wave-fronts using a cylindrical lens. Once the photons were reflected by mirrors, both photons were directed towards the beam splitter (a calcite crystal). The splitter didn’t change the direction of vertically-polarised photons, but it did diverge diplace horizontally-polarized photons. In order to make each direction equally probable and to make sure the crystal acted as a beam splitter, the planes of photon polarization were bent by 45 degrees before the photons entered the splitter. By repeating the measurements several times, the researchers obtained an interference image corresponding to the hologram of the unknown photon viewed from a single point in space.) Photo: FUW/

Execution of the hologram is that well known, an unobstructed light wave (reference) overlaps with a second wave of the same length, but taken from a 3D object (and therefore of the ridges and valleys of the light wave moved in varying degrees at different points in the image).

It comes to interference, that as a result of differences in the stages of both waves creates a complicated fringe. So registered hologram simply light the reference beam to recreate the spatial structure of wave fronts of light reflected from the object, and thus its three-dimensional shape.