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We describe a new type of Fourier transform (FT) interferometer in which the tunable optical delay between the two arms is realized by using a continuously variable slow-light medium instead of a moving arm as in a conventional setup. The spectral resolution of such a FT interferometer exceeds that of a conventional setup of comparable size by a factor equal to the maximum group index of the slow-light medium. The scheme is experimentally demonstrated by using a rubidium atomic vapor cell as the tunable slow-light medium, and the spectral resolution is enhanced by a factor of approximately 100.


This article was originally published in Physical Review Letters, volume 99, issue 24, in 2007.

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American Physical Society

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