Research Papers in Physics and Astronomy


Date of this Version



W. C. Huang and H. Batelaan. Testing Quantum Coherence in Stochastic Electrodynamics with Squeezed Schrödinger Cat States, Atoms 7, 42 (2019).



Copyright 2019 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license


The interference pattern in electron double-slit diffraction is a hallmark of quantum mechanics. A long-standing question for stochastic electrodynamics (SED) is whether or not it is capable of reproducing such effects, as interference is a manifestation of quantum coherence. In this study, we used excited harmonic oscillators to directly test this quantum feature in SED. We used two counter-propagating dichromatic laser pulses to promote a ground-state harmonic oscillator to a squeezed Schrödinger cat state. Upon recombination of the two well-separated wavepackets, an interference pattern emerges in the quantum probability distribution but is absent in the SED probability distribution. We thus give a counterexample that rejects SED as a valid alternative to quantum mechanics.