Polarization and coherence analysis of the optical two-photon radiation from the metastable 22S1/2 state of atomic hydrogen Academic Article uri icon


  • This chapter first summarizes fundamental aspects and results of the quantum electrodynamical theory of the two-photon radiation from the decay of the metastable 22S1/2 atomic hydrogen state. After a brief description of the second improved Stirling two-photon coincidence experiment polarization correlations of the two-photon decay are described in which both two or three linear polarizers are applied in order to test predictions of such correlations based upon quantum mechanics and local realistic theories (i.e., Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen type experiments). It is particularly noticeable that the three-polarizer coincidence measurement provided the largest difference (about 40%) between the Bell limits of local realistic theories and quantum mechanics so far. Apart from confirming in addition the correlations of right-right and left-left circularly polarized two-photon correlations a new type of coherence analysis of the two-photon radiation has been carried out experimentally and theoretically. A result of it is the measured coherence time of coh=1.210-15 s and coherence length of lcoh=ccoh=350nm of the two-photon emission. By applying a theoretical model of the two-photon radiation linked to cascade transitions the coherence length can be estimated to lcoh100 nm in agreement by order of magnitude with the experimental data. 2001 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Duncan, A. J., Kleinpoppen, H., & Scully, M. O.

citation count

  • 0

complete list of authors

  • Duncan, Alan J||Kleinpoppen, Hans||Scully, Marlan O

publication date

  • January 2001