Entangled photons for imaging and measurement techniques

Quantum imaging setup for the microscopic examination of cancer cells. Credit: Fraunhofer IOF

A team of researchers from the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering IOF in Jena has developed a quantum imaging solution that can facilitate highly detailed insights into tissue samples using extreme spectral ranges and less light.

Optical analysis techniques such as microscopy and spectroscopy quickly reach their limits in the infrared or terahertz range, precisely where valuable information is hidden.

The quantum mechanical effect of photon entanglement is helping the researchers allowing them to harness twin beams of light with different wavelengths. In the interferometric setup proposed by the researchers, a laser beam is sent through a nonlinear crystal in which it generates two entangled light beams. These two beams can have very different wavelengths depending on the crystal’s properties, but they are still connected to each other due to their entanglement.

While one photon beam in the invisible infrared range is sent to the object for illumination and interaction, its twin beam in the visible spectrum is captured by a camera. Since the entangled light particles carry the same information, an image is generated even though the light that reaches the camera never interacted with the actual object. (Phys.org)

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