IQIM Postdoctoral and Graduate Student Seminar

Friday October 30, 2015 4:00 PM

Optomechanics: a platform for exploring novel physics

Speaker: Bassam Helou, Yanbei Chen's Group
Location: East Bridge 114

Abstract: What is optomechanics about? Why are optomechanical setups interesting? The talk will address these questions!
We first introduce the basics of quantum optomechanics by explaining how a simple configuration of lasers and reflective test masses (e.g. a mirror) can be used to measure weak forces. Along the way, we mention the relevance of optomechanics to gravitational wave detection, and other fields of physics and applied physics.
In the second part of the talk, we discuss how optomechanics can help address, experimentally, two foundational questions:
1) How can gravity and quantum mechanics be made compatible with each other? We propose a feasible optomechanics experiment that would test whether gravity is of a fundamentally classical nature.
2) Can macroscopic objects behave quantum mechanically? Can they be prepared in non-classical position superposition states? We present an optimal measurement-based protocol for preparing test masses in squeezed states. We also rigorously justify and extend a framework (first presented in PRA 82 031804) for arbitrary Fock state preparation. 


 

 

Series IQIM Postdoctoral and Graduate Student Seminar Series

Contact: Marcia Brown at 626-395-4013 marciab@caltech.edu