Quantum entanglement, the spooky action at a distance that promises to be so useful for things like high-powered computing and security, is generally considered a function of the tiny world. It's easy — OK, not easy, but relatively practical nowadays — to take two particles or two microscopic things and intertwine their fates. Now for the first time, scientists have accomplished quantum entanglement on the macro scale, entangling two millimeter-sized diamonds.
Los Alamos National Labs is often associated with bombs, and the one it dropped today is no less likely to stir up a firestorm. Figuratively speaking, of course. That simmering controversy surrounding cell phone signals’ effect on biological tissue surfaced again today via a Los Alamos researcher who says the microwaves emitted by cell phones can interact with human tissues in an entirely new way that has yet to be taken into account.
Physicists from the University of Bonn are looking at things in a whole new light, quite literally. Through the clever use of mirrors and some smart science, researchers there have created a wholly new source of light by cooling photons to the point that they condense into a “super photon.” The so-called Bose-Einstein condensate made up of photons was, until now, thought impossible.
There's a race brewing between Chinese and American researchers, but this one has no weapons or spheres of influence or even space -- though it does involve lasers. It's a race to generate the most random numbers the fastest, and by tapping the quantum noise in a laser beam the Chinese just took the lead, turning out 300 megabits of random numerals per second to break a U.S. record that stood for only a matter of days.
Randomness can be confusing and often misleading, but it can also be extremely useful. Cryptographers seeking to generate unbreakable codes, for instance, love randomness.
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.
Scientists in China have broken the record for quantum teleportation, achieving a distance of about 10 miles, according to a new study in Nature Photonics. That's a giant leap from previous achievements.
The feat brings us closer to communicating information without needing a traditional signal transmission, the researchers note.
How many cats have to be both dead and alive before researchers are content that they've entangled enough particles? The current count is now five, but research published today in the Science suggests that it could be many more than that. Perhaps that's bad news for Schrodinger's cat, but it's great news for quantum pursuits like precision imaging and ultra-fast computing.