Quantum backflow, negative kinetic energy, and optical retro-propagation

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

59 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

For wavefunctions whose fourier spectrum (wavenumber or frequency) is positive, the local phase gradient can sometimes be negative; examples of this 'backflow' occur in quantum mechanics and optics. The backflow probability P (fraction of the region that is backflowing) is calculated for several cases. For waves that are superpositions of many uncorrelated components, P = (1 − r)/2, where r is a measure of the dispersion (mean/r.m.s.) of the component frequencies or wavenumbers. In two dimensions (backflow in spacetime, or wave propagation in the plane) the boundary of the backflowing region includes the phase singularities of the wave.
Translated title of the contributionQuantum backflow, negative kinetic energy, and optical retro-propagation
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1 - 15
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Physics A: Mathematical and Theoretical
Volume43
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2010

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