Science Innovations: Laura Kreidberg: Trying to Spot the First Sign of Life Outside Earth  |  Parent Interventions: Don't Let Children Drink Too Much Juice, Sugar Water With Little Nutrients  |  Technology Inceptions: Low-Cost Tissue Freezing Device to Help In Breast Cancer Treatment  |  Science Innovations: Exomoons May Become Quasi-planets  |  Science Innovations: Blue Tongue Lizard Babies As Clever as Adults  |  Parent Interventions: Quality Sleep for Teen Health   |  Technology Inceptions: MIT Develops Artificial 'Muscles' Based on Fibers  |  Career News: UGC-NET June 2019 Results Announced  |  International Edu News: Varsities of G-7 countries form alliance  |  National Edu News: IIITD&M to host world meet on energy  |  Science Innovations: Predictive Data to Help Cancer Patients Know Progress of Treatment  |  Technology Inceptions: DNA Data Storage, Social Robots to Metalenses-Top 10 Emerging Technologies   |  Career News: Civil Services Prelims 2019 Results Published  |  Health Monitor: E-Tattoo To Monitor Your Heart  |  Science Innovations: Making Fertiliser from Brewery Wastewater  |  
  • Pallikkutam Magazine
  • Companion Magazine
  • Mentor
  • Smart Board
  • Pallikkutam Publications

February 17, 2018 Saturday 12:36:17 PM IST

“Crystals of light” may become a reality

Science Innovations

17th February, 2018: In a combined effort of researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Harvard University, University of Maryland, Princeton University and the University of Chicago has brought out the possibility of photons (particles of light) to combine to form a triplet, for the first time in the history of science. The result is reported in the journal, Science.

The observation goes against the contemporary belief that individual photons that make up light do not interact. In the experiment with ultra-cooled Rubidium (cooled up to a millionth of a degree above absolute zero), the researchers found that groups of three photons interacting and, in effect, sticking together to form a completely new kind of photonic matter.

It is well known that cooling the atoms slows them to a near standstill. Researchers allowed shine a very weak laser beam to pass through this cloud of immobilized atoms, such that only a handful of photons travel through the cloud at any one time. As they measured measure the photons as they come out the other side of the atom cloud, they found that the photons streamed out as pairs and triplets.

Now, the photons that have interacted with each other, in this case through an attraction between them, can be thought of as strongly correlated, or entangled. Such entanglement is considered a key property for any quantum computing bit.


“If photons can influence one another, then if you can entangle these photons, and we’ve done that, you can use them to distribute quantum information in an interesting and useful way,” comments the researchers.

It’s completely novel in the sense that we don’t even know sometimes qualitatively what to expect,” Vuletic, the principal author of the paper reports. “With repulsion of photons, can they be such that they form a regular pattern, like a crystal of light? Or will something else happen? It’s very uncharted territory.


Comments