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Towards probing for hypercomplex quantum mechanics in a waveguide interferometer

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posted on 2023-01-11, 22:36 authored by Sebastian Gstir, Edmond Chan, Toni Eichelkraut, Alexander Szameit, Robert Keil, Gregor Weihs
We experimentally investigate the suitability of a multi-path waveguide interferometer with mechanical shutters for performing a test for hypercomplex quantum mechanics. Probing the interferometer with coherent light we systematically analyse the influence of experimental imperfections that could lead to a false-positive test result. In particular, we analyse the effects of detector nonlinearity, input-power and phase fluctuations on different timescales, closed-state transmissivity of shutters and crosstalk between different interferometer paths. In our experiment, a seemingly small shutter transmissivity in the order of about $2 \times 10^{-4}$ is the main source of systematic error, which suggests that this is a key imperfection to monitor and mitigate in future experiments.

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