Optomechanical generation of a mechanical catlike state by phonon subtraction

Itay Shomroni*, Liu Qiu, Tobias J. Kippenberg

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


We propose a scheme to prepare a macroscopic mechanical oscillator in a catlike state, close to a coherent state superposition. The mechanical oscillator, coupled by radiation-pressure interaction to a field in an optical cavity, is first prepared close to a squeezed vacuum state using a reservoir engineering technique. The system is then probed using a short optical pulse tuned to the lower motional sideband of the cavity resonance, realizing a photon-phonon swap interaction. A photon number measurement of the photons emerging from the cavity then conditions a phonon-subtracted catlike state with a negative Wigner distribution exhibiting separated peaks and multiple interference fringes. We show that this scheme is feasible using state-of-the-art photonic crystal optomechanical system.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number033812
JournalPhysical Review A
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank D. Malz, C. Galland, and N. J. Engelsen for useful discussions and comments. This work was supported by the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under Grant Agreement No. 732894 (FET Proactive HOT).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 authors. Published by the American Physical Society. Published by the American Physical Society under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license. Further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the author(s) and the published article's title, journal citation, and DOI.


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