Different quantum states of atoms in optical lattices can be nondestructively monitored by off-resonant collective light scattering into a cavity. Angle resolved measurements of photon number and variance give information about atom-number fluctuations and pair correlations without single-site access. Observation at angles of diffraction minima provides information on quantum fluctuations insensitive to classical noise. For transverse probing, no photon is scattered into a cavity from a Mott insulator phase, while the photon number is proportional to the atom number for a superfluid.
Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)