22-30 July 2021
North-West University
Africa/Johannesburg timezone
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Imaging with moving detectors

26 Jul 2021, 12:00
Potchefstroom Campus (North-West University)

Potchefstroom Campus

North-West University

Oral Presentation Track G - Theoretical and Computational Physics Theoretical and Computational Physics


Nicholas Bornman (University of the Witwatersrand)


The theoretical framework behind modern-day quantum optics has been successful in explaining a number of interesting phenomena. However, since it is traditionally formulated using ordinary quantum mechanics and Fourier optics, it cannot account for relativistic notions such as different reference frames (including non-inertial ones) or curved classical gravitational backgrounds. In an attempt to understand the quantum imaging process within a more complete quantum field theory (QFT) framework, a novel analogy is proposed: so-called Unruh-DeWitt (UDW) detectors can be used to model both the object one wishes to image as well as the pixelated imaging device itself. As an example, after coupling a QFT version of a biphoton state created via spontaneous parametric down-conversion (which is one of the principal processes used to create entangled photons in the laboratory) with arrays of Unruh-DeWitt detectors, we investigate quantum ghost imaging under both inertial and accelerating conditions. Given that the reconstructed images can be discerned better than a pure guess, the formalism appears capable of describing the quantum imaging process in non-trivial reference frames.

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Primary author

Nicholas Bornman (University of the Witwatersrand)


Prof. Achim Kempf (University of Waterloo) Prof. Andrew Forbes (University of Witwatersrand)

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