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Quantum enhancement of accuracy and precision in optical interferometry

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posted on 2023-11-30, 17:04 authored by Florian Kaiser, Panagiotis Vergyris, Djeylan Aktas, Charles Babin, Laurent Labonté, Sébastien Tanzilli
White-light interferometry is one of today's most precise tools for determining optical material properties. Achievable precision and accuracy are typically limited by systematic errors due to a high number of interdependent data fitting parameters. Here, we introduce spectrally-resolved quantum white-light interferometry as a novel tool for optical property measurements, notably chromatic dispersion in optical fibres. By exploiting both spectral and photon-number correlations of energy-time entangled photon pairs, the number of fitting parameters is significantly reduced which eliminates systematic errors and leads to an absolute determination of the material parameter. By comparing the quantum method to state-of-the-art approaches, we demonstrate the quantum advantage through 2.4 times better measurement precision, despite involving 62 times less photons. The improved results are due to conceptual advantages enabled by quantum optics which are likely to define new standards in experimental methods for characterising optical materials.

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