Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Subdiffraction-Limited Quantum Imaging within a Living Cell

Michael A. Taylor, Jiri Janousek, Vincent Daria, Joachim Knittel, Boris Hage, Hans-A. Bachor and Warwick P. Bowen

We report both subdiffraction-limited quantum metrology and quantum-enhanced spatial resolution for the first time in a biological context. Nanoparticles are tracked with quantum-correlated light as they diffuse through an extended region of a living cell in a quantum-enhanced photonic-force microscope. This allows spatial structure within the cell to be mapped at length scales down to 10 nm. Control experiments in water show a 14% resolution enhancement compared to experiments with coherent light. Our results confirm the long-standing prediction that quantum-correlated light can enhance spatial resolution at the nanoscale and in biology. Combined with state-of-the-art quantum light sources, this technique provides a path towards an order of magnitude improvement in resolution over similar classical imaging techniques.

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