Monthly Archives: September 2016

QuantIC is pleased to announce it is the UK Scientific Partner for Quantum Shorts 2016, a festival of short films that draw inspiration from quantum physics. The call for film submissions is now open and entries can be submitted until 11:59:59Pm GMT on December 1 2016 via http://shorts.quantumlah.org.

A shortlisting panel will select up to ten submissions to be shown by the festival’s screening partners, to including Singapore’s ArtScience
Museum at Marina Bay Sands, the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, Australia and Glasgow Science Centre in the UK. The screenings will take place in 2017. The festival’s top prize of US $1500 and runner-up prize of US $1000 will be decided by a panel of eminent judges. An additional prize will be decided by public vote on the shortlist.

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Professor Miles Padgett, QuantIC’s Principal Investigator, said, “The ever-expanding field of quantum physics is fertile ground not just for scientists to explore but for artists of all kinds to provide valuable new perspectives on this strange and exciting branch of science. We’re very much looking forward to seeing how Quantum Shorts will inspire filmmakers.”

Organized by the Centre for Quantum Technologies at the National University of Singapore, the competition is supported by Scientific American and Nature and other scientific partners in the US, Canada and Australia.

Submissions to Quantum Shorts 2016 are limited to five minutes in length. Enter via the website at http://shorts.quantumlah.org, which also features a full set of rules and guidelines and examples of previous winners.

Commercially available cameras have too many dark noise events to directly capture double-slit interference at the single photon level. However, in the research paper, “Video recording true single-photon double slit interference” (Aspden, R, Padgett, M and Spalding, G) published in the American Journal of Physics, QuantIC researchers use the detection of one photon in a time-correlated pair to herald the arrival of the partner photon at the camera. By activating the camera only when this partner photon is present, the camera noise levels can be significantly reduced. This system has enabled the improvement required for direct video imaging of Young’s double slit experiment with single photons.

Following a beamsplitter, two collection arms can detect the correlated photons emerging from the BBO crystal. The signal-to-noise ratio is improved by using the heralding detector to only trigger the time-gated intensified CCD (ICCD) camera when a time-correlated photon is due to arrive.
Following a beamsplitter, two collection arms can detect the correlated photons emerging from the BBO crystal. The signal-to-noise ratio is improved by using the heralding detector to only trigger the time-gated intensified CCD (ICCD) camera when a time-correlated photon is due to arrive.

 

Reuben Aspden, lead author on the research publication and part of QuantIC’s Quantum Buddies Teacher Support network, is excited about how it could be used as a teaching tool for secondary school teachers on one of quantum physics’ key experiments. He said, “It’s the first full-field image of the double slit experiment using single photons, so it is possible to see the interference pattern appearing photon by photon and extends the simple double slit experiment done in the classroom into the truly quantum world, highlighting the weirdness of single photon interference.

The full research paper and videos of the experiment can be downloaded here.