Collisional decoherence of a tracer particle moving in one dimension

Ingo Kamleitner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We study decoherence of the external degree of freedom of a tracer particle moving in a one dimensional dilute Boltzmann gas. We find that phase averaging is the dominant decoherence effect, rather than information exchange between tracer and gas particles. While a coherent superposition of two wave packets with different mean positions quickly turns into a mixed state, it is demonstrated that such superpositions of different momenta are robust to phase averaging, until the two wave packets acquire a different position due to the different velocity of each wave packet.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)052104-1-052104-9
Number of pages9
JournalPhysical Review A - Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2010

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