## ABSTRACT

In Chap. 17 we developed the quantum theory of the laser obtaining in particular expressions for the laser photon statistics and linewidth. In this chapter we discuss and amplify those results in terms of measurement theory. Section 18-1 provides an overview of measurement theory as it applies to the quantum electric field. The discussion leads naturally into a specific discussion of the measurement of photon statistics and the laser linewidth. In Sec. 18-2 a heuristic model of a photodetector is presented with reveals how the photo electron statistics resulting from incident radiation is related to the photon statistics of that radiation, t In Sec. 18-3 we discuss the laser linewidth with the use of a simple two level atom beam much like that of Sec. 16-1. Our present discussion utilizes the density matrix technique throughout rather than the density matrix-state vector combination of Sec. 16-1. The laser spectrum “seen” by the atomic beam has, in fact, the same Lorentzian profile given in Sec. 17-3. In Sec. 18-4 the laser linewidth is discussed in terms of a quantum version of the classical correlation function <£(* -f t )E(t)y. In spite of the fact that two time correlations are apparently required, we show that a single time and solutions to the density operator equation of motion are sufficient. This reduction is an example of the so-called Onsager regression hypothesis, which shows how to proceed from single-time to multitime correlation functions.