Single-Phonon Addition and Subtraction to a Mechanical Thermal State

G. Enzian, J. J. Price, L. Freisem, J. Nunn, J. Janousek, B. C. Buchler, P. K. Lam, M. R. Vanner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (SciVal)


Adding or subtracting a single quantum of excitation to a thermal state of a bosonic system has the counter-intuitive effect of approximately doubling its mean occupation. We perform the first experimental demonstration of this effect outside optics by implementing single-phonon addition and subtraction to a thermal state of a mechanical oscillator via Brillouin optomechanics in an optical whispering-gallery microresonator. Using a detection scheme that combines single-photon counting and optical heterodyne detection, we observe this doubling of the mechanical thermal fluctuations to a high precision. The capabilities of this joint click-dyne detection scheme adds a significant new dimension for optomechanical quantum science and applications.

Original languageEnglish
Article number033601
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jan 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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