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Quantum theory of electronic double-slit diraction

Xiang-Yao Wua , Bai-Jun Zhanga , Xiao-Jing Liua , Li Wanga , Bing Liua , Xi-Hui Fanb and Yi-Qing Guoc
a.Institute of Physics, Jilin Normal University, Siping 136000, China b. Department of Physics, Qufu Normal University, Qufu 273165, China c. Institute of High Energy Physics, P. O. Box 918(3), Beijing 100049, China The phenomena of electron, neutron, atomic and molecular diraction have been studied by many experiments, and these experiments are explained by some theoretical works. In this paper, we study electronic double-slit diraction with quantum mechanical approach. We can obtain the results: (1) When the slit width a is in the range of 3 50 we can obtain the obvious diraction patterns. (2) when the ratio of d+a = n(n = 1, 2, 3, ), order 2n, 3n, 4n, are missing a in diraction pattern. (3)When the ratio of d+a = n(n = 1, 2, 3, ), there isnt missing order in a diraction pattern. (4) We also nd a new quantum mechanics eect that the slit thickness c has a large aect to the electronic diraction patterns. We think all the predictions in our work can be tested by the electronic double-slit diraction experiment. PACS numbers: 03.75.-b; 61.14.Hg Keywords: Matter-wave; Electron double-slit diraction

arXiv:quant-ph/0609187v3 24 Apr 2007

1. Introduction The wave nature of subatomic particle elections and neutrons was postulated by de Broglie in 1923 and this idea can explain many diraction experiments. The matter-wave diraction has become a large eld of interest throughout the last year, and it is extend to atom, more massive, complex objects, like large molecules I2 , C60 and C70 , which were found in experiments12345 . In such experiments, the incoming atoms or molecules usually can be described by plane wave. As well known, the classical optics with its standard wave-theoretical methods and approximations, in particular those of Huygens and Kirchho, has been successfully applied to classical optics, and has yielded good agreement with many experiments. This simple wave-optical approach gives a description of matter wave diraction also67 . However, matter-wave interference and diraction are quantum phenomena, and its fully description needs quantum mechanical approach. In this work, we study the double-slit diraction of electron with quantum mechanical approach. In the view of quantum mechanics, the electron has the nature of wave, and the wave is described by wave function (r, t), which can be calculated with Schrdingers wave equation. The wave function (r, t) has o statistical meaning, i.e., | (r, t) |2 can be explained as the particles probability density at the denite position. For double-slit diraction, if we can calculate the electronic wave function (r, t) distributing on display screen, then we can obtain the diraction intensity for the double-slit, since the diraction intensity is directly proportional to | (r, t) |2 . In the double-slit diraction, the electron wave functions can be divided into three areas. The rst area is the incoming area, the electronic wave function is a plane wave. The second area is the double-slit area, where the electronic wave function can be calculated by Schrdingers o wave equation. The third area is the diraction area, where the electronic wave function can be obtained by the Kirchhos law. In the following, we will calculate these wave functions. The paper is organized as follows. In section 2 we calculate the electronic wave function in the double-slit with quantum mechanical approach. In section 3 we calculate the electronic wave function in diraction area with the Kirchhos law. Section 4 is numerical analysis, Section 5 is a summary of results and conclusion.

E-mail: wuxy2066@163.com

2
x T

B z d b E
a o y

FIG. 1: The double-slit geometry, the width a, the length b and the two slit distance d.

2. Quantum theory of electron diraction in double-slit In an innite plane, we consider a double-slit, its width a, length b and the two slit distance d are shown in FIG. 1. The x axis is along the slit length b and the y axis is along the slit width a. In the following, we calculate the electron wave function in the rst single-slit (left slit) with Schrodinger equation, and the electron wave function of the second single-slit(right slit) can be obtained easily. At a time t, we suppose that the incoming plane wave travels along the z axis. It is 1 (z, t) = Ae where A is a constant. The potential in the single-slit is V (x, y, z) = 0 = 0 x b, 0 y a, 0 z c otherwise, (2)
i

(pzEt)

(1)

where c is the thickness of the single-slit. The time-dependent and time-independent Schrodinger equations are i
2 2 2 2 (r, t) = ( 2 + 2 + 2 )(r, t), t 2M x y z

(3)

2 (r) 2 (r) 2 (r) 2M E + + + (r) = 0, 2 x2 y 2 z 2

(4)

where M (E) is the mass(energy) of the electron. In Eq. (4), the wave function (x, y, z) satises boundary conditions (0, y, z) = (b, y, z) = 0, (x, 0, z) = (x, a, z) = 0, The partial dierential equation (4) can be solved by the method of separation of variable. By writing (x, y, z) = X(x)Y (y)Z(z), Eq. (4) becomes 1 d2 Y 1 d2 Z 2M E 1 d2 X + + + = 0, 2 2 2 2 X dx Y dy Z dz and Eq. (8) can be written into the following three equations 1 d2 X + 1 = 0, X dx2 1 d2 Y + 2 = 0, Y dy 2 (9) (8) (7) (5) (6)

(10)

1 d2 Z + 3 = 0, Z dx2 where 1 , 2 and 3 are constants,which satisfy 2M E


2

3 (11)

= 1 + 2 + 3 .

(12)

From Eq. (5) and (6), with X(x) and Y (y) satisfying the boundary conditions X(0) = X(b) = 0 Y (0) = Y (a) = 0, we can obtain the equations of X(x) and Y (y) d2 X + 1 X = 0 dx2 X(0) = 0 X(b) = 0, and d2 Y + 2 Y = 0 dy 2 Y (0) = 0 Y (a) = 0, their eigenfunctions and eigenvalues are Xn (x) = An sin 1 = ( and Ym (y) = Bm sin 2 = ( The solution of Eq. (11) is Zmn (z) = Cmn e
q 2 2 2 2 i 2M E n b2 ma2 z 2

(13)

(14)

(15)

n 2 ) , b

n x b

(n = 1, 2, ) (16)

m 2 ) . a

m y a

(m = 1, 2, ) (17)

(18)

and the particular solution of the wave equation (4) is mn = Xn (x)Ym (y)Zmn (z) q nx my i 2M2E n22 2 m22 2 z b a = An Bm Cmn sin sin e b a r = Dmn sin nx my i sin e b a
2M E n2 2 2 b2

ma2 z

2 2

(19)

The time-dependent particular solution of Eq. (3) is mn (x, y, z, t) = mn (x, y, z)e The general solution of Eq. (3) is 2 (x, y, z, t) =
mn
i

Et

(20)

mn (x, y, z, t)
q
n2 2 2M E 2 b2 ma2 z i Et 2 2

my i nx sin e = Dmn sin b a mn

(21)

Eq. (21) is the electronic wave function in the rst single-slit. Since the wave functions are continuous at z = 0, we have 1 (x, y, z, t) |z=0 = 2 (x, y, z, t) |z=0 , (22)

4 from Eq. (22), we obtain Dmn sin


mn

my nx sin = A, b a

(23)

where Dmn is a coecient, which is Dmn =


a 4 ab 0 16A = mn 2 = 0 b

A sin
0

m n sin dd b a m, n, odd otherwise, (24)

substituting Eq. (24) into (21), we can obtain the electronic wave function in the rst single-slit. (2n + 1)x (2m + 1)y 16A sin sin (2m + 1)(2n + 1) 2 b a m,n=0 ei
q
(2n+1)2 2 2M E 2 b2

2 (x, y, z, t) =

(2m+1) a2

2 2

z i Et

(25)

The electron wave function in the second single-slit can be obtained by making the coordinate translation: x = x y = y (a + d) z = z,

(26)

on substituting Eq. (26) into (25), we can obtain the electron wave function 3 (x, y, z, t) in the second single-slit 3 (x, y, z, t) = 16A (2n + 1)x (2m + 1)(y (a + d)) sin sin (2m + 1)(2n + 1) 2 b a m,n=0 ei
q
(2n+1)2 2 2M E 2 b2

(2m+1) a2

2 2

z i Et

(27)

3. The wave function of electron diraction With the Kirchhos law, we can calculate the electron wave function in the diraction area. It can be calculated by the formula8 eikr 1 [ + (ik 1 ) r ]ds, n (28) out (r, t) = in in 4 s r r r where out (r, t) is diraction wave function on display screen, in (r, t) is the wave function of slit surface (z=c) and s is the area of the aperture or slit. The Kirchho formula (28) is approximate, since it neglects the eect of diraction aperture or slit on the incoming wave in (r, t). However, when the diraction aperture or slit is larger than the electron wave length the eect can be neglected. For the double-slit diraction, Eq. (28) becomes out (r, t) = 1 4 eikr [ + (ik 1 ) r ]ds n 2 2 r r r eikr [ + (ik 1 ) r ]ds. n 3 3 r r r

s1

1 4

(29)

s2

In Eq. (29), the rst and second terms are corresponding to the diraction wave functions of the rst slit and the second slit. In the following, we rstly calculate the diraction wave function of the rst slit, it is eikr 1 [ + (ik 1 ) r ]ds, n (30) out1 (r, t) = 2 2 4 s1 r r r r The diraction area is shown in FIG. 2, where k = 2ME , s1 is the area of the rst single-slit, is the 2 is a unit position of a point on the surface (z=c), P is an arbitrary point in the diraction area, and n vector, which is normal to the surface of the slit.

I   r B R o T E
n c

 r 

  P

FIG. 2: The diraction area of single-slit

From FIG. 2, we have R r = R R r R r k2 = R k then, eik(R r r ) eikr = r R r r r = eikR eik2 r r R r e e R



r

r r

, r

(31)

r ikR ik2 r

(| | R), r

(32)

with K2 = K r . Substituting Eq. (31) and (32) into (30), one can obtain r eikR out1 (r, t) = 4R In Eq. (33), the term 2 ( ) r 2 ( ) r 2 ( ) r (x , y , z )| + ny + nz n 2 z=c = nx x y z ) 2 ( r = nz z 16A = (2m + 1)(2n + 1) 2 m=0 n=0 i e 2M E
2

e
s0

ik2 r

R n [ 2 (x , y , z ) + (i k 2 2 )2 (x , y , z )]ds . R

(33)

(2n + 1) 2 (2m + 1) 2 ) ( ) b a

q i 2M E ( (2n+1) )2 ( (2m+1) )2 c 2 b a

sin then Eq. (33) is out1 (r, t) = e eikR i Et e 4R eik2 r

(2n + 1) (2m + 1) x sin y, b a

(34)

s0 q i 2M E ( (2n+1) )2 ( (2m+1) )2 c 2 b a

16A (2m + 1)(2n + 1) 2 m=0 n=0 sin

[i

(2n + 1) (2m + 1) x sin y b a R 2M E (2n + 1) 2 (2m + 1) 2 n ( ]dx dy . ) ( ) + i k2 n 2 2 b a R

(35)

Assume that the angle between k2 and x axis (y axis) is and the surface of yz (xz), then we have k2x = k sin ,

6 ( ), and () is the angle between k2 2 (36) (37)

k2y = k sin ,

= k cos , n k2 where is the angle between k2 and z axis, and the angles , , satisfy the equation cos2 + cos2 ( Substituting Eq. (36) - (38) into (35) gives eikR i Et 16A i e e 4R (2m + 1)(2n + 1) 2 m=0 n=0 2M E
2 q
(2n+1) 2 2M E ) ( (2m+1) )2 c 2 ( b a

) + cos2 ( ) = 1. 2 2

(38)

out1 (x, y, z, t) = [i

(2n + 1) 2 (2m + 1) 2 1 ) ( ) + (ik ) cos2 sin2 ] b a R b (2m + 1) (2n + 1) a ik sin y x dx y dy . e sin eik sin x sin b a 0 0 (

(39)

Eq. (39) is the diraction wave function of the rst slit. Obviously, the diraction wave function of the second slit is out2 (x, y, z, t) = [i 2M E
2

16A eikR i Et i e e 4R (2m + 1)(2n + 1) 2 m=0 n=0

(2n+1) 2 2M E ) ( (2m+1) )2 c 2 ( b a

(2n + 1) 2 (2m + 1) 2 1 ) ( ) + (ik ) cos2 sin2 ] b a R b (2m + 1) (2n + 1) 2a+d ik sin y x dx (y (a + d))dy , eik sin x sin e sin b a 0 a+d (

(40)

where d is the two slit distance. The total diraction wave function for the double-slit is out (x, y, z, t) = out1 (x, y, z, t) + out2 (x, y, z, t) (41)

From the diraction wave function out (x, y, z, t), we can obtain the relative diraction intensity I on the display screen, it is I |out (x, y, z, t)|2 . 4. Numerical result In this section we present our numerical calculation of relative diraction intensity. The main input parameters are: M = 9.11 1031kg, R = 1m, A = 108 , = 0.01rad, E = 0.001eV and the Planck constant = 1.055 1034 Js. We can obtain the relation between the diraction angle and relative diraction intensity I. In double-slit diraction, we can obtain the results: (1) When the ratio of d+a = n(n = 1, 2, 3, ), a order 2n, 3n, 4n, are missing in diraction pattern. (2)When the ratio of d+a = n(n = 1, 2, 3, ), there a isnt missing order in diraction pattern. In FIG. 3 and FIG. 4, we take a = , b = 1000 and c = , the diraction patterns are not obvious. In FIG. 3, the ratio of d+a = 6, the order 6 is missing. In FIG. 4, the a ratio of d+a = 6.5, there isnt missing order. In FIG. 5, FIG. 6 and FIG. 7, we take a = , b = 1000, c = , a the diraction patterns are obvious, where = 2 is electronic wavelength. In FIG.5, the ratio of 2ME = 3, the orders 3, 6, are missing. In FIG. 6, the ratio of d+a = 3.4, there isnt missing order. In a FIG. 7, the ratio of d+a = 6, the orders 6, 12, are missing. In FIG. 8, FIG. 9 and FIG.10, the slit width a a are corresponding to 20, 30 and 50, their diraction patterns are obvious. In FIG. 8, FIG. 9 and FIG. 10, the ratio of d+a = 3, the orders 3, 6, are missing. From FIG. 11 to FIG. 14, the slit thickness c is a corresponding to 0, 10, 100 and 1000. We can nd that the thickness c can make a large impact on the double-slit diraction pattern. When the slit thickness c increases the peak values of diraction pattern increase also.
d+a a

(42)

7 5. Conclusion In conclusion, we studied the double-slit diraction phenomenon of electron with quantum mechanical approach. We give the relation between diraction angle and the relative diraction intensity. We nd the following results: (1) When the slit width a is in the range of 3 50 we can obtain the obvious diraction patterns. (2) when the ratio of d+a = n(n = 1, 2, 3, ), order 2n, 3n, 4n, are missing in diraction a pattern. (3)When the ratio of d+a = n(n = 1, 2, 3, ), there isnt missing order in diraction pattern. (4) a We also nd a new quantum mechanics eect that the slit thickness c has a large aect to the electronic diraction patterns. We think all the predictions in our work can be tested by the electronic double-slit diraction experiment. Acknowledgement We are very grateful for the valuable discussions with Yang Mao-Zhi.

1 2 3 4 5 6

7 8

O. Carnal and J. Mlynek, Phys. Rev. Lett. 66, 2689 (1991). W. Schllkopf, J. P. Toennies, Science 266, 1345 (1994). o M. Arudt, O. Nairz, J. Voss-Andreae, C. Kwller, G. Vander Zouw, and A. Zeilinger, Nature 401, 680 (1999). O. Nairz, M. Arudt and A. Zeilinger, J. Mod. Opt. 47, 2811 (2000). S. Kunze, K. Dieckmann and G. Rempe, Phys. Rev. Lett. 78, 2038 (1997). B. Brezger, L. Hackermuller, S. Uttenthaler, J. Petschinka, M. Arndt, A. Zeilinger, Phys. Rev. Lett. 88, 100404 (2002). A.S. Sanz, F. Borondo and M.J. Bastiaans, Phys. Rev. A 71, 042103 (2005). M. Schwartz, Principles of Electrodynamics, Oxford University Press, 1972.

8
I I

0.6 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 0.1 -1.5 -1 -0.5 0.5 1


(rad)

0.6 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 0.1 -1.5 -1 -0.5 0.5 1


(rad)

1.5

1.5

FIG. 3: The relation between and I with a = , b = 1000, c = and d = 5. I

FIG. 4: The relation between and I with a = , b = 1000, c = and d = 5.5. I

25 20 15 10 5
(rad)

25 20 15 10 5
(rad)

-1

-0.5

0.5

-1

-0.5

0.5

FIG. 5: The relation between and I with a = 5, b = 1000, c = and d = 10.

FIG. 6: The relation between and I with a = 5, b = 1000, c = and d = 12.

400 300 200 100

20 15 10 5
(rad)

(rad)

-0.75 -0.5 -0.25

0.25 0.5 0.75

-0.2

-0.1

0.1

0.2

FIG. 7: The relation between and I with a = 5, b = 1000, c = and d = 25.

FIG. 8: The relation between and I with a = 20 , b = 1000, c = and d = 40.

9
I

800 600

2500 2000 1500

400 1000 200


(rad)

500
(rad)

-0.15 -0.1 -0.05

0.05 0.1 0.15

-0.1

-0.05

0.05

0.1

FIG. 9: The relation between and I with a = 30, b = 1000, c = and d = 60.

FIG. 10: The relation between and I with a = 50, b = 1000, c = and d = 100.

100 80 60 40

120 100 80 60 40

20
(rad)

20 -0.4 -0.2

(rad)

-0.6 -0.4 -0.2

0.2 0.4 0.6

0.2

0.4

FIG. 11: The relation between and I with a = 10, b = 1000, c = 0 and d = 20.

FIG. 12: The relation between and I with a = 10, b = 1000, c = 10 and d = 20.

2000 1750 1500 1250 1000 750 500 250


(rad)

17500 15000 12500 10000 7500 5000 2500


(rad)

-0.4 -0.2

0.2

0.4

-0.4 -0.2

0.2

0.4

FIG. 13: The relation between and I with a = 10, b = 1000, c = 100 and d = 20.

FIG. 14: The relation between and I with a = 10, b = 1000, c = 1000 and d = 20.