The existence of fully transmissive eigenchannels ("open channels") in a random scattering medium is a counterintuitive and unresolved prediction of random matrix theory. The smoking gun of such open channels, namely a bimodal distribution of the transmission efficiencies of the scattering channels, has so far eluded experimental observation. We observe an experimental distribution of transmission efficiencies that obeys the predicted bimodal Dorokhov-Mello-Pereyra-Kumar distribution. Thereby we show the existence of open channels in a linear optical scattering system. The characterization of the scattering system is carried out by a quantum-optical readout method. We find that missing a single channel in the measurement already prevents detection of the open channels, illustrating why their observation has proven so elusive until now. Our work confirms a long-standing prediction of random matrix theory underlying wave transport through disordered systems.
|Number of pages||9|
|Publication status||Published - 8 Oct 2021|