Young-type experiment using a single-electron source and an independent atomic-size two-center interferometer.

Abstract

Evidence is given for Young-type interferences caused by a single electron acting on a given double-center scatterer analogous to an atomic-size double-slit system. The electron is provided by autoionization of a doubly excited He atom following the capture of the electrons of H2 by a He2+ incoming ion. The autoionizing projectile is a single-electron source, independent of the interferometer provided by the two H+ centers of the fully ionized H2 molecule. This experiment resembles the famous thought experiment imagined by Feynman in 1963, in which the quantum nature of the electron is illustrated from a Young-like double-slit experiment. Well-defined oscillations are visible in the angular distribution of the scattered electrons, showing that each electron interferes with itself.

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