Talk:Quantum optics

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Nobel Prize?[edit]

I don't really know about anything about this, but I heard today that the Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded to men in this field. Could somebody explain what their contribution was, on the page, or would that go in a separate article? ParkerHiggins 17:19, 4 October 2005 (UTC)

I realize this is a rather tardy answer, but yes, the prizewinner in question is Theodor W. Hänsch of the Max Plank Institute. Maury (talk) 22:16, 4 March 2008 (UTC)
There were more:
-----<)kmk(>--- (talk) 22:13, 24 August 2012 (UTC)

Optical Damping[edit]

Apparently some researchers at Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO)used a couple of techniques to cool a mirror to -274 celsius, using two techniques called optical trapping (something to do with keeping a mirror in a precise position) and optical damping, which i think is a form of doppler cooling.

There aren't any articles about optical damping available on wiki, here's the article i found these referenced in. . Hopefully someone can explain it in more detail. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 05:51, 12 April 2007 (UTC). Nahola Ahmed Ebrahim El-Dessoky —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:26, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

History section[edit]

Hi, I've just read the History section of the article and I've found two points that may be relevant.

  • Use of the word photonics "Research into quantum optics (...) is now often called photonics". While this is one acception, photonics may also refer to the optical telecomunication industry.
  • Photoelectric effect "the only possible explanation for the effect was the existence of particles of light called photons". After having read Mandel, L (1976). E. Wolf, ed. "The case for and against semiclassical radiation theory". Progress in Optics (North-Holland) XIII: 27–69. , I would attenuate the affirmation. I don't have the article anymore, but the summary I had made back then reads "the onset of the photoelectric effect, the relation between electron energy and the wave frequency, the bunching of photoelectrons in a Hanbury-Brown and Twiss interferometer as well as their poissonian statistics can be acounted for in a ad hoc semiclassical theory (classical field)". Historically, it seems that the discovery of Compton scattering has played a great role in the acceptation of Einstein's theory. --Mathieu Perrin (talk) 21:39, 13 November 2008 (UTC)
Sounds plausible. I'd have no objection if you copied the summary into the article, and icluded the reference, per usual. User:Linas (talk) 17:28, 1 December 2013 (UTC)

Opening sentence[edit]

I disagree with the opening sentence: "Light is made up of particles called photons and hence inherently is "grainy" (quantized)." Can someone point out the evidence for the pointlike character of photons? I accept the existence of discrete excitations of the electromagnetic field. However, the best I can do to produce a particle seems to be to consider a superposition of energy states to form a wavepacket. However, a wavepacket is not a fundamental, indivisible element of the electromagnetic field.

The opening sentence presupposes the existence of particles called photons and uses this to justify the quantization that we observe. Logically, this does not seem tenable. Historically, we observed quantization and have invented the idea of photons (as quanta of the E/M field) as a result. However, to the very best of my knowledge, we don't have strong evidence that light is made up of indivisible particles. (talk) 03:40, 16 January 2011 (UTC)

Quantum electronics[edit]

The article titled Quantum electronics has been redirected here, and copied with minimal changes to maintain sentence structure. It looks weak, and the Discussion page cut and paste below is not encouraging. This is just an interim step in cleanup of links from major revision of J.B. Gunn article. Michael P. Barnett (talk) 03:55, 19 December 2010 (UTC)


In the 1950s to the 1970s the field was seen as what has now become the part of quantum optics that draws not from atomic physics but from solid-state physics.

To this educated Englishman, this sentence is completely devoid of meaning.

Solid State Physics and Electrons[edit]

"Solid-State Physics regularly takes Quantum Mechanics into account, and is usually concerned with electrons."

I'm a little uncertain about the above quote for the following reasons:

  • A lot of work copes pretty well with semi-classical models.
  • The second part ("is usually concerned with electrons") is a bit unclear. Phonons are a good example of Solid-State Physics, not concerned with electrons.

Can anyone think of a more accurate replacement for this sentence? --djsik 11:08, 10 December 2005 (UTC)

Quantum electronics[edit]

I'm interested in quantum electronics, but this page only talks about its loss of focus because of its migration in to simular subjects but nothing about quantum electronics itself. Seb-Gibbs (talk) 13:59, 10 August 2009 (UTC)


This tag was added: [1]. What exactly is dubious? IRWolfie- (talk) 19:40, 6 May 2013 (UTC)

Well, lasers are very dependent on transitions between energy levels of atoms (or molecules) through which stimulated emission takes place. But I can not agree with the text: "the quantum mechanics underlying the laser's principles was studied now with more emphasis on the properties of light" unless I am totally missing what is being said (in which case it surely needs to be rewritten!). Laser light is, if anything simpler to understand than thermal radiation, as it is similar to an RF oscillator (rather pure sine wave) rather than bandlimited noise. The photon statistics are simply those of a poisson process rather than the more complicated Bose-Einstein statistics of thermal radiation, and there isn't anything about the quantum nature of light from a laser that is unique to the laser (except for the lack of "wave noise," which isn't really a quantum concept). So if anything, it is non-laser light where the quantum aspects (photon statistics) of the light require further analysis. The application of quantum mechanics to lasers in particular has to do with the atoms/molecules providing stimulated emission.
Now one can see that whoever wrote this text was trying very hard to make "quantum optics" relevant by mentioning lasers. But as far as I can see, this wasn't really a valid point; if anything the opposite is true. Interferometrist (talk) 23:10, 14 May 2013 (UTC)
OK, sounds good. So, can't you find some edit that provides the correct emphasis? As otherwise, you leave the work to us shmucks, to muddle with... User:Linas (talk) 17:35, 1 December 2013 (UTC)