What is Interference?

Jeremy's Research blog
3 min readJul 2, 2022
Image Credit “Jeremy Retamar Arrieta”

Interference is a phenomenon that occurs when two waves superpose to form a resultant wave. This can be constructive or destructive interference, depending on the phase difference between the waves. When two waves are in phase, they will combine to create a larger wave. When they are out of phase, they will cancel each other out. This can be observed with all types of waves, but is particularly evident with light waves. The phenomenon can be explained using the wave model of light, but a deeper understanding of interference requires knowledge of wave-particle duality. If the waves are correlated or coherent with each other, then the resultant amplitude at a point is the vector sum of the amplitudes of the individual waves. If the waves are in phase, then they will produce a maximum displacement at a point. If the waves are in anti-phase, then they will produce a minimum displacement at a point.

Quantum interference is a strange and mysterious phenomenon that occurs when two or more quantum wave-functions overlap. Unlike classical interference, which can be explained using simple mathematics, quantum interference is still not fully understood. Specifically what is causing the wave function collapse when observed.

Quantum interference occurs when the wave-function interferes with itself. This can happen when two or more waves overlap, creating an interference pattern. The interference pattern is created by the combination of the waves’ individual amplitudes, and is non-negative. This means that the absolute value of the wave-function squared is always positive. However, scientists are gradually beginning to understand the complex mechanisms that underlie it.

A result of superposition is interference. Qubit states can interfere with each other. This is because of a probability amplitude. That is why you can also represent qubit states as probability waves. You can use amplitudes to interact with or cancel qubits states out. Quantum computing algorithms used like this can enable quantum acceleration. Which makes them different than classical algorithms.

In classical interference, two different waves interfere. This interference is obtained simply by adding the displacements from equilibrium (or amplitudes) of the two waves. The interference is involved different types of mathematical functions: First, a classical…

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Jeremy's Research blog

Quantum computing researcher, hiker, dog lover, intense gamer, artist and writer. I like writing SciFi hard science, and horror fiction..