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Proceedings Paper

Phase-sensitive coherence and the classical-quantum boundary in ghost imaging
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Paper Abstract

The theory of partial coherence has a long and storied history in classical statistical optics. The vast majority of this work addresses fields that are statistically stationary in time, hence their complex envelopes only have phase-insensitive correlations. The quantum optics of squeezed-state generation, however, depends on nonlinear interactions producing baseband field operators with phase-insensitive and phase-sensitive correlations. Utilizing quantum light to enhance imaging has been a topic of considerable current interest, much of it involving biphotons, i.e., streams of entangled-photon pairs. Biphotons have been employed for quantum versions of optical coherence tomography, ghost imaging, holography, and lithography. However, their seemingly quantum features have been mimicked with classical-state light, questioning wherein lies the classical-quantum boundary. We have shown, for the case of Gaussian-state light, that this boundary is intimately connected to the theory of phase-sensitive partial coherence. Here we present that theory, contrasting it with the familiar case of phase-insensitive partial coherence, and use it to elucidate the classical-quantum boundary of ghost imaging. We show, both theoretically and experimentally, that classical phase-sensitive light produces ghost images most closely mimicking those obtained with biphotons, and we derive the spatial resolution, image contrast, and signal-to-noise ratio of a standoff-sensing ghost imager, taking into account target-induced speckle.

Paper Details

Date Published: 20 September 2011
PDF: 16 pages
Proc. SPIE 8122, Tribute to Joseph W. Goodman, 81220M (20 September 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.893151
Show Author Affiliations
Baris I. Erkmen, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Nicholas D. Hardy, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)
Dheera Venkatraman, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)
Franco N. C. Wong, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)
Jeffrey H. Shapiro, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8122:
Tribute to Joseph W. Goodman
H. John Caulfield; Henri H. Arsenault, Editor(s)

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