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Video recording true single-photon double-slit interference
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Commercially available cameras do not have a low-enough dark noise to directly capture double-slit interference at the single photon level. In this work, camera noise levels are significantly reduced by activating the camera only when the presence of a photon has been detected by the independent detection of a time-correlated photon produced via parametric down-conversion. This triggering scheme provides the improvement required for direct video imaging of Young's double-slit experiment with single photons, allowing clarified versions of this foundational demonstration. We present video data of the evolving interference patterns. Also, we introduce variations on this experiment aimed at promoting discussion of the role spatial coherence plays in such a measurement, emphasizing complementary aspects of single-photon measurement and highlighting the roles of transverse position and momentum correlations between down-converted photons, including examples of “ghost” imaging and diffraction.
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