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Illustration of quantum complementarity using single photons interfering on a grating

Abstract : A recent experiment performed by Afshar et al (2007 Found. Phys. 37 295–305) has been interpreted as a violation of Bohr's complementarity principle between interference visibility and which-path information (WPI) in a two-path interferometer. We have reproduced this experiment, using true singlephoton pulses propagating in a two-path wavefront-splitting interferometer realized with a Fresnel's biprism, and followed by a grating with adjustable transmitting slits. The measured values of interference visibility V and WPI, characterized by the distinguishability parameter D, are found to obey the complementarity relation V2 + D2 6 1. This result demonstrates that the experiment can be perfectly explained by the standard interpretation of quantum mechanics.
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V. Jacques, N.D. Lai, A. Dréau, D. Zheng, D. Chauvat, et al.. Illustration of quantum complementarity using single photons interfering on a grating. New Journal of Physics, Institute of Physics: Open Access Journals, 2008, 10, pp.123009. ⟨10.1088/1367-2630/10/12/123009⟩. ⟨hal-00570459⟩



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