Factoring and Fourier Transformation with a Mach-Zehnder Interferometer


The scheme of Clauser and Dowling (Phys. Rev. A 53, 4587 (1996)) for factoring NN by means of an N-slit interference experiment is translated into an experiment with a single Mach-Zehnder interferometer. With dispersive phase shifters the ratio of the coherence length to wavelength limits the numbers that can be factored. A conservative estimate permits N107N \approx 10^7. It is furthermore shown, that sine and cosine Fourier coefficients of a real periodic function can be obtained with such an interferometer.Comment: 5 pages, 2 postscript figures; to appear in Phys.Rev.A, Nov. 1997; Figures contained only in replaced versio

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