Two is the magic number | Science News

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Two is the magic number

Pillar of quantum mechanics stands up to new experiment

3:06pm, July 27, 2010

Extending an experiment at the foundation of quantum physics confirms that two is company and three is a crowd. In a new twist on the famous double-slit experiment, researchers have verified a basic tenet of quantum mechanics by showing that adding a third slit doesn’t create additional interference between packets of light.

The double-slit experiment embodies the mystery at the heart of quantum mechanics, the famous physicist Richard Feynman observed in his Lectures on Physics. The experiment illustrates some of the strangest predictions of quantum mechanics, including the dual particle-wave nature of tiny objects.

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