We discuss how to use coincidence detection to generate unusual, nonsinusoidal interference curves by using not a single detector, but several in coincidence. The method works for both strong (classical) and weak (on the few-photon level) light, although in the latter case the detection becomes probabilistic with low efficiency. Using the method, one can tailor the coincidence measurement setup to obtain essentially any interference pattern. We then use the method to experimentally demonstrate phase-difference state interference patterns in the few-photon regime that are highly nonsinusoidal. We also discuss optimal implementation of the method with regard to fluctuations and success probability, and we analyze the origin and magnitude of errors.
© 2013 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: June 6, 2013
Manuscript Accepted: August 1, 2013
Published: September 6, 2013
Saroosh Shabbir, Marcin Swillo, and Gunnar Björk, "Arbitrary interference curves by coincidence detection: theory and experiment," J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 30, 1921-1928 (2013)