Erwin Schrödinger – 50 Years After


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pp: 123–132

DOI: 10.4171/121-1/6

Optomechanical Schrödinger cats – a case for space

Rainer Kaltenbaek[1] and Markus Aspelmeyer[2]

(1) Fakultät für Physik, Universität Wien, Boltzmanngasse 5, 1090, WIEN, AUSTRIA
(2) Fakultät für Physik, Universität Wien, Boltzmanngasse 5, 1090, WIEN, AUSTRIA

Quantum optomechanics exploits radiation pressure effects inside optical cavities. It can be used to generate quantum states of the center-of-mass motion of massive mechanical objects, thereby opening up a new parameter regime for macroscopic quantum experiments. The challenging experimental conditions to maintain and observe quantum coherence for increasingly large objects may require a space environment rather than an earth-bound laboratory. We introduce a possible space experiment to study the wave-packet expansion of massive objects. This forms the basis for Schrödinger cat states of unprecedented size and mass.

Keywords: Quantum optics, quantum optomechanics

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