We study the influence of damping on quantum interference of a particle in free space and in a harmonic potential. Using the influence-functional method, it is shown that the suppression of quantum interference is described by the ratio of the thermal diffusion induced by the environment to the quantum-mechanical diffusion. We describe the interference pattern as a function of the friction constant and the temperature, and discuss the difference between the strong damping limit and the classical limit.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)