In a real-life use of Schrödinger's theoretical paradoxical cat, researchers report that they were able to quickly transfer a complex set of quantum information while preserving its integrity. The information, in the form of light, was manipulated in such a way that it existed in two states at the same time, and it was destroyed in one spot and recreated in another. The new teleportation breakthrough is a major step toward building safe, effective quantum computers.
Physicists have long been able to "ghost image" -- that is, to use a split laser beam to detect the presence of an object without actually seeing or interacting with it -- but the process is complicated and can take a while. Now physicists at the University of Rochester's Institute of Optics say they've devised a simpler means to detect the presence of a known object using a single photon.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.