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Your search has returned 118 articles:
  • News

    Quantum tractor beam could tug atoms, molecules

    The wavelike properties of quantum matter could lead to a scaled-down version of Star Trek technology. A new kind of tractor beam could use a beam of particles to reel in atoms or molecules, physicists propose in the May 5 Physical Review Letters.

    Scientists have previously created tractor beams using light or sound waves, which can pull small particles a few millimeters or centimeters (...

    05/19/2017 - 07:00 Quantum Physics
  • News

    Key Einstein principle survives quantum test

    Particles with mind-bending quantum properties still follow a standard gravitational rule, at least as far as scientists can tell.

    The equivalence principle — one of the central tenets of Einstein’s theory of gravity — survived a quantum test, scientists report online April 7 at arXiv.org.

    In Einstein’s gravity theory — the general theory of relativity — gravity and acceleration...

    04/28/2017 - 07:28 Quantum Physics
  • Feature

    There’s still a lot we don’t know about the proton

    Nuclear physicist Evangeline Downie hadn’t planned to study one of the thorniest puzzles of the proton.

    But when opportunity knocked, Downie couldn’t say no. “It’s the proton,” she exclaims. The mysteries that still swirl around this jewel of the subatomic realm were too tantalizing to resist. The plentiful particles make up much of the visible matter in the universe. “We’re made of them...

    04/18/2017 - 08:00 Physics, Particle Physics, Quantum Physics
  • News

    Millions of atoms entangled in record-breaking quantum tests

    In a feat of quantum one-upmanship, two teams of scientists have staked new claims of linking whopping numbers of atoms at the quantum level.

    Researchers from Geneva demonstrated quantum entanglement of 16 million atoms, smashing the previous record of about 3,000 entangled atoms (SN Online: 3/25/2015). Meanwhile, scientists from Canada and the United States used a similar technique to...

    03/27/2017 - 07:00 Quantum Physics
  • News

    Quantum counterfeiters might succeed

    Scientists have created an ultrasecure form of money using quantum mechanics — and immediately demonstrated a potential security loophole.

    Under ideal conditions, quantum currency is impossible to counterfeit. But thanks to the messiness of reality, a forger with access to sophisticated equipment could skirt that quantum security if banks don’t take appropriate precautions, scientists...

    03/13/2017 - 07:00 Quantum Physics
  • Letters to the Editor

    Readers amazed by Amasia

    Saved by the Bell

    Physicists used light from stars to perform a cosmic Bell test, which verified that quantum particles were indeed “spooky,” Emily Conover reported in “Quantum effect passes space test” (SN: 1/21/17, p. 12).

    Reader George Mitchell took issue with Conover’s description of entangled photons before they are measured as having multiple polarizations at once. “We don’t know...

    02/22/2017 - 12:43 Quantum Physics, Earth, Technology
  • News

    Vacuum’s quantum effect on light detected

    Observations of the dense remnant of an exploded star have provided the first sign of a quantum effect on light passing through empty space.

    Light from the stellar remnant, a neutron star located about 400 light-years away, is polarized, meaning that its electromagnetic waves are oriented preferentially in a particular direction like light that reflects off the surface of water (SN: 7/8/...

    12/09/2016 - 08:00 Quantum Physics, Astronomy
  • News

    Cosmic test confirms quantum weirdness

    The spookiness of quantum mechanics has gone cosmic.

    Physicists have used starlight to perform a “Bell test” to verify the strange nature of quantum mechanics. For decades, such tests have repeatedly confirmed quantum physics’s quirks, but the tests contained loopholes. While the major loopholes have already been closed (SN: 12/26/15, p. 24), a lingering caveat remained, regarding...

    12/05/2016 - 07:00 Quantum Physics
  • Letters to the Editor

    Readers ponder hominid hookups and more

    Nuts about Neandertals

    Recent genetic analyses of populations around the world showed that a wave of ancient humans left Africa about 50,000 to 72,000 years ago. All non-Africans alive today originated from this single wave, Tina Hesman Saey reported in “One Africa exodus populated globe” (SN: 10/15/16, p. 6).

    “If the Neandertals were already present when Homo sapiens arrived on the scene...

    11/30/2016 - 14:30 Anthropology, Quantum Physics, Astronomy
  • Context

    Why quantum mechanics might need an overhaul

    SAN ANTONIO — Quantum mechanics is science’s equivalent of political polarization.

    Voters either take sides and argue with each other endlessly, or stay home and accept politics as it is. Physicists either just accept quantum mechanics and do their calculations, or take sides in the never-ending debate over what quantum mechanics is actually saying about reality.

    Steven Weinberg...

    11/04/2016 - 15:37 Quantum Physics