Skip to comments.Physicists spooked by faster-than-light information transfer
Posted on 08/14/2008 5:42:56 PM PDT by LibWhacker
Quantum weirdness even stranger than previously thought.
Two photons can be connected in a way that seems to defy the very nature of space and time, yet still obeys the laws of quantum mechanics.
Physicists at the University of Geneva achieved the weird result by creating a pair of entangled photons, separating them, then sending them down a fibre optic cable to the Swiss villages of Satigny and Jussy, some 18 kilometres apart.
The researchers found that when each photon reached its destination, it could instantly sense its twins behaviour without any direct communication. The finding does not violate the laws of quantum mechanics, the theory that physicists use to describe the behaviour of very small systems. Rather, it shows just how quantum mechanics can defy everyday expectation, says Nicolas Gisin, the researcher who led the study. Our experiment just puts the finger where it hurts, he says. The study is published in Nature.
Spooky and unsettling
In the everyday world, objects can organize themselves in just a few ways. For example, two people can coordinate their actions by talking directly with each other, or they can both receive instructions from a third source.
In both these cases, the information is communicated at or below the speed of light, in keeping with Einsteins axiom that nothing in the Universe can go faster. But quantum mechanics allows for a third way to coordinate information. When two particles are quantum mechanically entangled with each other, measuring the properties of one will instantly tell you something about the other. In other words, quantum theory allows two particles to organize themselves at apparently faster-than-light speeds.
Einstein called such behaviour spooky action at a distance, because he found it deeply unsettling. He and other physicists clung to the idea that there might be some other way for the particles to communicate with each other at or near the speed of light.
But the new experiment shows that direct communication between the photons (at least as we know it) is simply impossible. The team simultaneously measured several properties of both photons, such as phase, when they arrived at their villages and found that they did indeed have a spooky awareness of each others behaviour. On the basis of their measurements, the team concluded that if the photons had communicated, they must have done so at least 100,000 times faster than the speed of light something nearly all physicists thought would be impossible. In other words, these photons cannot know about each other through any sort of normal exchange of information.
The team also ruled out other possible reasons for the apparently coordinated behaviour. For example, one could imagine that the photons might have shared information before they left Geneva but Gisins measurements showed that they could not.
A second test ensured that the scientists in the two villages werent missing some form of communication thanks to Earths motion through space. According to Einsteins theory of relativity, observers moving at high speeds can have different reference frames, so that they can potentially get different measurements of the same event. The Geneva results could possibly be explained if the two photons were communicating through a frame of reference that wasnt readily apparent to the scientists."
But theoretical calculations2 have shown that performing tests over a full spin of the globe would test all possible reference frames. The team did just that, and they got the same result in all cases.
The bottom line, says Gisin is that there is just no time for these two photons to communicate.
The experiment shows that in quantum mechanics at least, some things transcend space-time, says Terence Rudolph, a theorist at Imperial College London. It also shows that humans have attached undue importance to the three dimensions of space and one of time we live in, he argues. We think space and time are important because thats the kind of monkeys we are.
If you are baffled by the result, fear not youre not alone. For me, honestly, it doesnt make any sense, says Gisin. I dont think we can today claim that we have a good story to tell how this all happens. He hopes that the work will stimulate theorists to come up with new ways of explaining the spooky effect.
Mr. Bell & Mr. Bohm were right.
Open a subspace channel to Star Fleet Command, Lt. Uhura.
Okaaaaay....I so do not get the distinction.
Our experiment just puts the finger where it hurts, he says.
Where it hurts? Snort. Namely my brain, from trying to figger this out.
Bump for later read....C
This is news? The Demicans and Republicrats have been demonstrating ‘entanglement’ like this for decades.
“if you are not confused and annoyed by quantum theory you do not understand it”
Ummm...aren't photons, like, inanimate objects?
Dang, Mr. Mew just gave up trying to explain this to me, and he's usually got the patience of Job.
I don’t know why they are surprised at this. There has been experiment after experiment showing this. I know many scientists have been in denial and have claimed for some time that entanglement would not allow faster than light information travel but it does. There has also been some very good experiments using entangled photons in remote scanning where two beams of photons are used. The one beam of entangled photons are used to scan a target while the other is directed to a sensor and from the resultant information of the second beam only there has been some success generating an image.
I wouldn’t be surprised if a crude quantum semaphore system couldn’t be devised to show clearly that information can be transmitted faster than the speed of light.
You and me, Mew! I still can’t wrap my brain around the concept that the speed of light is constant, and any circumstance where the speed of light appears to be faster or slower, than time is either slower or faster, respectively. Why can’t it be the other way around?
Hee hee. I feel better now!
You’re not alone, buddy, lol!
First they say that direct communication is impossible. Then they say that if it occurred it had to have taken place at least 100,000 times faster than light! Huh?
There was no FTL information transfer. The wavefunction instantaneouly collapsed into an observable, by the book, sourcing consistent data. Information existed only after opposite ends compared datasets - and that transmission happens no faster than lightspeed. Viewing one dataset allows no conclusions to be drawn. It won't even do FTL Morse code. The universe is causal.
The secret lives of subatomic particles! I just love this stuff.
I just wish I could stop thinking like a monkey!
complicated by the fact that observation has an impact on the outcome.
There are a few other examples in quantum physics of instantaneous effects, but to call it “information” is misleading. It can never be used for communication purposes, for instance, because the “information” is really only partial. Altering an entangled particle will effect the other one similarly, but also randomly. In order to compare the two, you still need to communicate the information at light speed (or less).
The article says the photons are “entangled” which means they are connected in some fashion.
The best analogy I can some up with is to imagine a 2 x 4 of infinite length. (we’ll ignore mass and rigidity in this example) If you move the 2 x 4, at any point along the length, it will communicate motion almost instantaneously. However, it won’t violate the laws governing the speed of light, even though a million miles away, it will be moving at the same time as the other end. Obviously, in this instance, distance matters. Two feet away won’t gain you anything. 200,000,000,000 feet away, though.....
The problem is I don’t think you can ignore rigidity. That’s too much of a simplification and undermines the analogy.
Didn’t someone write about this many moons ago? Something like a non-compressable fluid in a long tube as a circuit, or something? Fell apart with insufficiently rigid tube. Plus, any distance reasonable with current materials much cheaper w/radio, light, etc.
I swear, there’s a fallacy here, but I’m too sleepy, or dopy or one of them dwarves...
100,000 times faster than the speed of light? Wow... Only thing faster is the speed at which a LibTard mind slams shut in the face of logic.
Even if Feynman didn’t say it, I would still be confused.
I’m bumping too.
I prefer a universe that is casual. Those formal affairs are a pain...
A few considerations:
The 500 pound gorilla that still must be beat is “causality”. This boils down to cause and effect, with the idea that it is impossible to see the result before the cause of that result has happened.
This means that even if communication happens faster than light, you still can’t get the message before it has been sent.
The big question will be to see what happens when matched pairs are separated by more than 186,000 miles. The pair might communicate faster than light, but the information itself might not be part of that communication until a second has passed. And at twice that distance, two seconds, etc.
This would mean that not only is causality preserved, but the universal speed limit.
After I tried to beat up a 500 pound gorilla, I'd be a "casualty"...
I think what they stopped short of saying is that the communication path between the two photons took place in a different dimension where the speed of light is far greater than our three or four dimensiona.
Or is it??
Next thing you know big foot is going to pop right out of that lab in Switzerland.
Yes, but is it floating-point or fixed-point?
At any rate; if they build a mother board with faster than light photons the next version of Windows will slow it down to molasses in January.
No point of reference is the true reality.
Re: big foot
No, he’s dead in Georgia. in an icebox. Or a costume shop.
Interesting question. On purely asthetic grounds I vote for trancententals all the way down.
Spooky Physics: Signals Seem to Travel Faster Than Light
LiveScience | Aug 13, 2008 | Charles Q. Choi
Posted on 08/13/2008 12:11:36 PM PDT by decimon
Another variant on this experiment? Afterward the lead scientist gets to give a little interview to some newsman and explain how its really puzzling and on one has a clue what’s going on.
Yeah, OK. But... the further down you go, the more quantized things get, don't they?
A couple of years ago I got into a debate with another FReeper over this idea. I thought the concept had been basically (but not extensively) verified when CERN did an experiment like this around 2000.
The experiment shows that in quantum mechanics at least, some things transcend space-time, says Terence Rudolph, a theorist at Imperial College London. It also shows that humans have attached undue importance to the three dimensions of space and one of time we live in, he argues. "We think space and time are important because that's the kind of monkeys we are."We primate a mistake coming down from the trees. ;')
HOpe you’re listening to C2C tonight.
Hoagland asserts that when PART III of his disclosures comes out soonish . . .
there will be plans such that any clever person in their garage can make their own zero-point energy production unit.
Says it’s super simple.
Have read that before . . . could get interesting.
Makes my head hurt!
From part 2:
So, precisely as predicted by the HD model (and DePalma!) -- a key section of von Braun's rocket, in fact, did rotate that night ... as it placed Explorer I into space!
Mystery of "the unexplained higher orbit" ... finally ... solved.
Well ... not quite, of course.
For, this "confirmation" only deepened the real mystery:
Why does "spinning" a steel pinball, or ... rotating a one-ton, high-tech "tub" -- containing 15 solid rockets -- allow both to climb SIGNIFICANTLY HIGHER against gravity ... than if they were NOT spinning!?
One of the first reactions I had to this fascinating confirmation -- that portions of von Braun's rocket HAD to spin, inevitably (from DePalma's experiment ...) resulting in the higher orbit for Explorer I -- was a feeling of intense gratification for Bruce; for, this simple engineering detail proved that Bruce DePalma has been absolutely right all along ... for over 34 years ... in insisting that "spinning a mass" also creates "some kind of anti-gravitational, anti-intertial field ..." which allows the object to fly higher against gravity than if it was NOT spinning!
Von Braun -- decades before Bruce DePalma ever conceived of his elegant little "spinning ball experiment" -- had already PROVED Depalma right ... with easily the most expensive "spinning ball" demonstration one could possibly imagine (Explorer I cost the American taxpayer approximately 20 million dollars, in 1958; today, allowing for inflation, that would be something like "half a billion ... ").
Further, it was now obvious that this is why von Braun also missed the Moon ... by those "pesky ~37,000 miles" with Pioneer 4.
Again he was using, in his Juno-2 "moonrocket" (a further modification of the Jupiter-C ...), EXACTLY the same "spinning tub" arrangement for the four solid-rocket upper stages that he'd used in the previous Earth-orbiting Explorer launches; and (from what we now know ...), the "DePalma Effect" struck again ... neatly over-accelerating the Pioneer 4 spacecraft to a slightly higher velocity than JPL had calculated using only standard "Newtonian dynamics" ... thus, causing the spacecraft to arrive at the Moon's orbit slightly sooner than it should have ... passing ahead of the Moon itself (which, of course, hadn't reached the "rendezvous point" yet ...) by those disappointing "37,000 miles (below) ...."
It all fit -- beautifully.
Of course, the reason why simply "spinning an object" should so dramatically change its "Newtonian dynamics" -- against all current mainstream theories (including, "sacred" Relativity ...) -- was still as profound a mystery as ever ....
It is hard to overstate both the scientific and political significance of von Braun's initial Explorer I discovery (swiftly confirmed, as we have documented, by Explorers III and IV, and all three Vanguard launches!) -- as well as all their confirmed connections now to DePalma's totally independent, rotating laboratory experiments.
Oh, did I forget to mention--
The US Navy Vanguard three-stage rocket also utilized a solid-propellant in its third stage ... so, it also had to be spun during the burn ... for "stabilization" -- at ~100 rpm (below)!
And, of course, then there was Allais ....
ALL these independent, dynamical results revealed "huge, gaping holes ..." in conventional "Newtonian mechanics" ... to say nothing of what they did to "General Relativity!" Yet, mainstream science -- and the mainstream science press, including those covering the space progream for the last 50 years -- blithely went on ... as if nothing was amiss!
DePalma himself, trained as a mainstream physicist for decades at two of the premier universities on the planet -- MIT and Harvard! -- wrestled with the extraordinary implications of his "spinning ball experiment" (first carried out in 1972 ...) for years -- before finally publishing some tentative, but far-reaching conclusions ....
"Firstly, he had no reason to be able to predict the motion of a freely falling object on the basis of the inertial alterations he had measured which had concerned themselves with constrained situations of rotating objects. Second, there was no reason to expect inertial alterations [because of Einstein's inviolate "Principal of Equivalence"] to affect the rate of fall of a released object and there was no available theory which could in any way be applied to the situation or a falling rotating object in a gravitational field. This is a situation known in religious terms as a "leap into the dark."
"Since the author and his assistants are experts in the application of stroboscopic lighting techniques to the study of high speed motions, the first experimental cut at the situation was to photograph the trajectories of a steel ball bearing rotating at a high speed together with an identical [non-rotating] control object moving at a similar initial velocity. The result of the experiment was so startling and anomalous as to have taken me five years to understand.
"... Basically, the spinning object going higher than the identical non-rotating control with the same initial velocity, and, then falling faster than the identical non-rotating control, presents a dilemma which can only be resolved or understood ... on the basis of radically new concepts in physics [distinct from the existing "Laws of Thermodynamics" ... "Newton's Laws" ... or "Special and General Relativity"] ...
"We know when we can alter the properties of mechanical objects, i.e. change their inertia, we have contravened the conservation of energy, because we have associated the properties of an object with the space which contains the object. The space which contains the object also contains energy and we can go at the project in two ways: we can attempt to extract the energy without worrying where it came from, or we can attempt to understand physics, ourselves, and the Universe by a new formulation of reality.
"... The behavior of rotating objects is explained [after much thought] simply on the addition of free energy to whatever motion the rotating object is [already] making. [Thus] the spinning object goes higher and falls faster than the identical non-rotating control.
"... In terms of the dropping of the spinning ball, the understanding of the experiment involves the results of many other experiments as well as the resolution of a mind picture of the Universe which is our best approximation to understanding at the present time. What makes it difficult for other experimenters to understand the experiment is that it is not simply the results which are important. Without a theoretical foundation of understanding to make the experiment comprehensible -- to fit the results into a context of rational understanding and harmony with the facts of other experiments -- the data become trivial and worthless, and, worst of all, subject to misinterpretation.
"The [technological] availability of free energy from as simple an experiment as colliding a rotating object with a non-rotating one opens up the development of other machines for energy extraction and propulsion which may be more convenient to handle than the extraction of energy from the collision of a rotating object with a non-rotating one [emphasis added] ...."
Wait. Let me guess. Photon entanglement involves Gravity latching, and we’re going to discover that the speed of Gravity is C squared (an accelerating velocity)?!
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