Photofragmentation Beam Splitters for Matter-Wave Interferometry

Workgroup Arndt Group


19. Dec 2014  — The latest publication of CoQuS students Nadine Dörre and Jonas Rodewald and their collaborators was published in PRL and highlighted as Editor's Choice and as Viewpoint in "Physics" 7, 122 (2014) by Gil Summy


Photofragmentation Beam Splitters for Matter-Wave Interferometry


Extending the range of quantum interferometry to a wider class of composite nanoparticles requires new tools to diffract matter waves. Recently, pulsed photoionization light gratings have demonstrated their suitability for high mass matter-wave physics. Here, we extend quantum interference experiments to a new class of particles by introducing photofragmentation beam splitters into time-domain matter-wave interferometry. We present data that demonstrate this coherent beam splitting mechanism with clusters of hexafluorobenzene and we show single-photon depletion gratings based both on fragmentation and ionization for clusters of vanillin. We propose that photofragmentation gratings can act on a large set of van der Waals clusters and biomolecules which are thermally unstable and often resilient to single-photon ionization.

Original Publication:

N. Dörre, J. Rodewald, P. Geyer, B. von Issendorff, P. Haslinger, M. Arndt,
Photofragmentation Beam Splitters for Matter-Wave Interferometry

Phys. Rev. Lett. 113, 233001 (2014)