Khan Mahmoud, Quantum over Brunch Friday, Sept. 21, 2012, 11am

Creating Schrodinger’s cat state with Bose-Einstein condensates in multiple wells
Khan Mahmoud, JQI

Planetary Hall, Room 306, 11am (+ lunch after noon)

Quantum superposition principle, when applied to macroscopic objects, gives rise to seeming paradoxes as highlighted by Schrodinger in his famous thought experiment involving dead-and-alive cats. Unlike superpositions of different spin states of an electron, a classical object such as a cat cannot be found in a superposition of two distinct states. I will present a proposal for creating such highly entangled states with ultracold atomic BEC in a multiple well setting. Motivated by the unstable equilibrium dynamics of a rigid pendulum, I will discuss how a BEC in a double well can be evolved into a superposition of hundreds of particles simultaneously in both wells. I then generalize this method to BEC in multiple wells showing the creation of multi-positional cat states. Possible applications of cat states include precision measurements, quantum information processing, testing quantum-classical boundary, etc.