Volume 82, Number 3, May 2008
|Number of page(s)||6|
|Published online||21 April 2008|
Superluminal traversal time and interference between multiple finite wave packets
Department of Physics, Shanghai University - 99 Shangda Road, Shanghai 200444, PRC
2 State Key Laboratory of Transient Optics and Photonics, Xi'an Institute of Optics and Precision Mechanics of CAS Xi'an 710119, PRC
Accepted: 11 March 2008
The mechanism of superluminal traversal time is investigated from the viewpoint of interference between multiple finite wave packets, due to the multiple reflections inside the well or barrier. In the case of potential well traveling that is classically allowed, each of the successively transmitted constituents is delayed by a subluminal time. When the thickness of the well is much smaller in comparison with a characteristic length of the incident wave packet, the reshaped wave packet with superluminal traversal time in transmission maintains the profile of the incident wave packet. In the case of potential barrier tunneling that is classically forbidden, though each of the successively transmitted constituents is delayed by a time that is independent of the barrier thickness, the interference between multiple transmitted constituents explains the barrier thickness dependence of the traversal time for thin barriers and its barrier thickness independence for thick barriers. This manifests the nature of the Hartman effect.
PACS: 03.65.Xp – Quantum mechanics: Tunneling, traversal time, quantum Zeno dynamics / 42.25.Bs – Wave propagation, transmission and absorption / 73.40.Gk – Tunneling
© EPLA, 2008
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