Quantum hydrodynamics of a single particle

Daniel Gustavo Suárez-Forero, Vincenzo Ardizzone, Saimon Filipe Covre da Silva, Marcus Reindl, Antonio Fieramosca, Laura Polimeno, Milena De Giorgi, Lorenzo Dominici, Loren N. Pfeiffer, Giuseppe Gigli, Dario Ballarini, Fabrice Laussy, Armando Rastelli, Daniele Sanvitto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Semiconductor devices are strong competitors in the race for the development of quantum computational systems. In this work, we interface two semiconductor building blocks of different dimensionalities with complementary properties: (1) a quantum dot hosting a single exciton and acting as a nearly ideal single-photon emitter and (2) a quantum well in a 2D microcavity sustaining polaritons, which are known for their strong interactions and unique hydrodynamic properties, including ultrafast real-time monitoring of their propagation and phase mapping. In the present experiment, we can thus observe how the injected single particles propagate and evolve inside the microcavity, giving rise to hydrodynamic features typical of macroscopic systems despite their genuine intrinsic quantum nature. In the presence of a structural defect, we observe the celebrated quantum interference of a single particle that produces fringes reminiscent of wave propagation. While this behavior could be theoretically expected, our imaging of such an interference pattern, together with a measurement of antibunching, constitutes the first demonstration of spatial mapping of the self-interference of a single quantum particle impinging on an obstacle.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number85
JournalLight: Science and Applications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2020
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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