Abstract

We present an experimental method to measure the transverse spatial quantum state of an optical field in coordinate space at the single-photon level. The continuous-variable measurements are made with a photon-counting, parity-inverting Sagnac interferometer based on all-reflecting optics. The technique provides a large numerical aperture without distorting the shape of the wavefront, does not introduce astigmatism, and allows for characterization of fully or partially coherent optical fields at the single-photon level. Measurements of the transverse spatial Wigner functions for highly attenuated coherent beams are presented and compared with theoretical predictions.

© 2005 Optical Society of America

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