Quantum squeezing of motion in a mechanical resonator
According to quantum mechanics, a harmonic oscillator can never be completely at rest. Even in the ground state, its position will always have fluctuations, called the zero-point motion. Although the zero-point fluctuations are unavoidable, they can be manipulated. Using microwave frequency radiation pressure, we have manipulated the thermal fluctuations of a micrometer-scale mechanical resonator to produce a stationary quadrature-squeezed state with a minimum variance of 0.80 times that of the ground state. We also performed phase-sensitive, back-action evading measurements of a thermal state squeezed to 1.09 times the zero-point level. Our results are relevant to the quantum engineering of states of matter at large length scales, the study of decoherence of large quantum systems, and for the realization of ultrasensitive sensing of force and motion.
Additional Information© 2015 American Association for the Advancement of Science. Received for publication 7 May 2015. Accepted for publication 28 July 2015. This work is supported by funding provided by the Institute for Quantum Information and Matter, an NSF Physics Frontiers Center with support of the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation (NSF-IQIM 1125565), by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA-QUANTUM HR0011-10-1-0066), by the NSF (NSF-DMR 1052647 and NSF-EEC 0832819), and by the Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC) and Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) through STARnet Center for Function Accelerated nanoMaterial Engineering (FAME). A.A.C., F.M., and A.K. acknowledge support from the DARPA ORCHID program through a grant from AFOSR, F.M. and A.K. from ITN cQOM and the ERC OPTOMECH, and A.A.C. from NSERC.
Submitted - 1507.01662v1.pdf
Supplemental Material - Wollman-SM.pdf