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Generation of Schrödinger cats in trapped ions


A quantum system in interaction with a repeatedly measured one is subjected to a non-unitary time evolution provoking the decay of some states in favor of the remaining ones. Under appropriate hypotheses the system may be addressed exactly toward a quantum state or pushed into a pre-selected finite-dimensional subspace. On the basis of such a general strategy, we propose to exploit suitable vibronic couplings in order to ‘extract’ trapped ion center of mass states of motion characterized by well defined absolute value of an angular momentum projection. In particular, since it implies the simultaneous presence of opposite angular momentum projections, we show the realizability of Schrödinger Cat superpositions involving clockwise and counterclockwise two-dimensional motions. Specific examples are provided. The efficiency and the fidelity of the method are discussed.

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Based on the talk held at the 11th Central European Workshop on Quantum Optics (CEWQ011), 18–20 July 2004, Trieste, Italy.

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Militello, B., Messina, A. Generation of Schrödinger cats in trapped ions. Acta Phys. Hung. B 20, 253–259 (2004).

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  • quantum non-demolition measurements
  • ion traps
  • angular momentum


  • 03.65.Xp
  • 03.65.Ta
  • 32.80.Pj