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Can an Electron be in Two Places at the Same Time?
Max Planck Society ^ | 11 October 2005 | Staff

Posted on 10/12/2005 3:10:28 AM PDT by PatrickHenry

A hundred years ago, we took the first steps in recognising, at the level of elementary physical events, the dual character of nature that had been postulated in natural philosophy. Albert Einstein was the first who saw Max Planck’s quantum hypothesis leading to this dual character. Einstein suggested the photon have an electromagnetic wave character, although photons had previously been considered as particles. That was the quintessence of his work on the photoelectric effect. Later in 1926, it was deBroglie that recognised that all the building blocks of nature known to us as particles - electrons, protons, etc. - behave like waves under certain conditions.

In its totality, therefore, nature is dual. None of its components can only be considered as a particle or as a wave. To understand this fact, Niels Bohr introduced in 1923 the Complementarity Principle: simply put, every component in nature has a particle, as well as a wavelike character, and it depends only on the observer which character he sees at any given time. In other words, the experiment determines which characteristic one is measuring - particle or wave.

His whole life long, Einstein suspected [PH: shouldn't that be "doubted"?] that natural characteristics actually depend on the observer. He believed that there must be a reality independent of the observer. Indeed, quantum physics has simply come to accept as a given over the years that there does not seem to be an independent reality. Physics has ceased questioning this, because experiments have confirmed it repeatedly and with a growing accuracy.

The best example is Young’s double-slit experiment. Coherent light is passed through a barrier with two slits. On an observation screen behind it, there is a pattern made of light and dark stripes. The experiment can be carried out not only with light, but also particles - for example, electrons. If single electrons are sent, one after the other, through the open Young double slit, then a stripe-shaped interference pattern appears on the photo plate behind it. The pattern contains no information about the route that the electron took. But if one of the two slits is closed, an image appears of the other open slit from which one can directly read the path of the electron. What this experiment does not produce, however, is a stripe pattern and situation report. For that, a molecular double slit experiment is required that is based not upon position-momentum uncertainty, but on reflective symmetry.

The double-slit was voted the most beautiful experiment of all time in a 2002 poll by Physics World, published by England’s Institute of Physics. Although each electron seems to go alone through one of the two slits, at the end a wavelike interference pattern is created, as if the electron split while it went through the slit, but then was subsequently re-unified. But if one of the slits is closed, or an observer sees which slit the electron went through, then it behaves like a perfectly normal particle. That particle is only at one position at one time, but not at the same time. So, depending on how the experiment is carried out, the electron is either at position A, position B, or at both at the same time.

But Bohr’s Complementarity Principle, which explains this ambiguity, requires that one can only observe one of the two electron manifestations at any given time - either as a wave or a particle, but not both simultaneously. This remains a certainty in every experiment, despite all the ambiguity in quantum physics. Either a system is in a state of "both/and" like a wave, or "either/or" like a particle, relating to its localisation. This is, in principle, a consequence of Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle, which says that given a complementary pair of measurements - for example, position and momentum - only one can be determined exactly at the same time. Information about the other measurement is lost, proportionally.

Recently there has been a set of experiments suggesting that these various manifestations of material can be "carried over into" each other - in other words, they can switch from one form to the other and, under certain conditions, back again. This set of experiments is called quantum markers and quantum erasers. Researchers have shown in the last few years that for atoms and photons - and now, electrons - "both/and" and "either/or" exist side-by-side. In other words, there is a grey zone of complementarity. There are therefore experimentally demonstrable conditions in which the material appears to be both a wave and a particle.

These situations can be described with a duality relation. It can be seen as an extended Complementarity Principle for quantum physics; it can also be labelled a co-existence principle. It says that manifestations of material which would normally be mutually exclusive - e.g., local and not local, coherent and not coherent - are indeed measurable and make themselves evident, in a particular "transition area". One can speak of partial localisation and partial coherence, or partial visibility and partial differentiability. These are measurements that are connected to each other via the duality relation.

In this transition area the Complementarity Principle, and the complementary dualism of nature, can be extended to be a co-existence principle, a parallel dualism. Nature has thus an ambivalent character previously unassumed. Atomic interferometry provides us with examples of this ambivalence. It was first found in 1997 in atoms, which are made from an assembly of particles.

In a recent issue of Nature Max Planck researchers in Berlin, together with researchers from the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California, report about a molecular double-slit experiment with electrons - not assemblies of particles, like atoms. Molecules with identical, and thus reflectively symmetrical, atoms, behave like a microscopically small double-slit built by nature. Nitrogen is one such molecule. In it, each electron - also the highly localised inner electrons - stays simultaneously in both atoms. If we ionise such a molecule with a weak x-ray, we end up with a coherent - that is, wavelike - strongly coupled electron emission from both atomic sides. This is just like a double slit experiment with single electrons.

For the first time, the researchers were able to show the coherent character of electron emissions from such a molecule, in this analogue to the double slit experiment. They used a weak x-ray to destabilise the innermost, and thus most strongly localised, electrons of nitrogen from the molecule, and then followed their movement in the molecular frame of reference using ion coincidence measurements. In addition, the researchers succeeded in proving something long doubted: that a disruption of the reflective symmetry of this molecule leads to a partial loss of coherence through the introduction of two different heavy isotopes, in this case N14 and N15. The electrons begin to localise partially on one of the two, now distinguishable, atoms. This is equivalent to partially marking one of the two slits in Young’s double slit experiment. This is partial "which way" information, because the marking gives information about which path the electron took.

The experiments were carried out by members of the working group "atomic physics" of the FHI at the synchrotron radiation laboratories BESSY in Berlin and HASYLAB at DESY in Hamburg. The measurements took place using a multi-detector array for combined electron and ion proof behind what are called undulator beam pipes, which deliver weak x-rays with a high intensity and spectral resolution.


[Lead paragraph, which seems like an abstract, so to make the article read smoother, I moved it to the end.]
In something akin to a double-slit experiment, scientists at the Fritz Haber Institute of the Max Planck Society, in co-operation with researchers from the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California, have shown for the first time that electrons have characteristics of both waves and particles at the same time and in virtually the push of a button can be switched back and forth between these states. The researchers provided evidence that disrupting the reflective symmetry of these molecules by introducing two different heavy isotopes, in this case N14 and N15, leads to a partial loss of coherence. The electrons partially begin to localise on one of the two, now distinguishable, atoms. The results could have implications for the building and control of "artificial molecules", which are made of semiconductor quantum dots, and are a possible component of quantum computers. (Nature/i>, September 29, 2005).


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Miscellaneous; Philosophy
KEYWORDS: physics; qm
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This looks like a classic. [I put in some bolding, underlining, and bracketted comments.]
1 posted on 10/12/2005 3:10:30 AM PDT by PatrickHenry
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To: VadeRetro; Junior; longshadow; RadioAstronomer; Doctor Stochastic; js1138; Shryke; RightWhale; ...
SciencePing
An elite subset of the Evolution list.
See the list's explanation at my freeper homepage.
Then FReepmail to be added or dropped.

2 posted on 10/12/2005 3:12:05 AM PDT by PatrickHenry ( I won't respond to a troll, crackpot, retard, or incurable ignoramus.)
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To: PatrickHenry

Upshot of this is that an electron needs two alibis.


3 posted on 10/12/2005 3:12:12 AM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (No wonder the Southern Baptist Church threw Greer out: Only one god per church! [Ann Coulter])
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To: PatrickHenry
Is it that we can establish that an electron is at two places at the same time, or that there is no way that we can establish that it is not?
4 posted on 10/12/2005 3:15:08 AM PDT by BikerNYC (Modernman should not have been banned.)
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To: PatrickHenry

I knew that.........


5 posted on 10/12/2005 3:26:58 AM PDT by yer gonna put yer eye out (Will quip for food...)
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To: BikerNYC
Ask Schroedinger's Cat.

And that is that.

6 posted on 10/12/2005 3:28:59 AM PDT by grey_whiskers (The opinions are solely those of the author and are subject to change without notice.)
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To: PatrickHenry

Still doesn't disprove the theory that " The angle of the dangle....."


7 posted on 10/12/2005 3:32:41 AM PDT by leadhead (Itís a duty and a responsibility to defeat them. But it's also a pleasure)
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To: grey_whiskers

In one place Schroedinger's Cat is fighting with Schroedinger's Dog. In the other place both Cat and Dog are sleeping.


8 posted on 10/12/2005 3:33:45 AM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (No wonder the Southern Baptist Church threw Greer out: Only one god per church! [Ann Coulter])
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To: PatrickHenry
This experiment offers some insight to some heretofore unexplained phenomena:

- It seems that democratic voters in some big cities exhibit the tendency to appear at multiple voting booths at the same time. Perhaps a single door (slit) at the polling place could cause these people to act more like particles and travel to only one booth?!

- Rose law firm records both existed and didn't exist at the same time. Maybe we need to view them as particles to limit their ability to behave in wavelike (unexplainable paths to reach their destination) manner.

Just a couple of real world scenarios that might benefit from this observation.
9 posted on 10/12/2005 3:35:23 AM PDT by will of the people
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To: PatrickHenry

Can the Transporter be far behing???

Beam me up Scotty!


10 posted on 10/12/2005 3:39:46 AM PDT by Vaquero ("An armed society is a polite society" R. Heinlein)
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To: Cagey

I'm not sure but I think a nuetron can.


11 posted on 10/12/2005 3:40:57 AM PDT by ShadowDancer (Stupid people make my brain sad.)
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To: BikerNYC
If one is a critical reader of textbooks, one can see that this has been known for a long time and is even worse than described above (women and children effected most).

There is only one electron in the whole universe, but it is everywhere at once. Just read the books. Many if not most describe the electron in the singular; "THE electron..... bla, bla, bla". Now that the secret is out (Bush knew), we're DOOMED!

12 posted on 10/12/2005 3:50:51 AM PDT by Paladin2 (MSM rioted over Katrina and looted the truth)
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To: PatrickHenry

bookmark


13 posted on 10/12/2005 4:05:40 AM PDT by tentmaker
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To: PatrickHenry

the first time that electrons have characteristics of both waves and particles at the same time and in virtually the push of a button can be switched back and forth between these states


this statment seems to really tell it all .....

the on - off ... one or zero ... the fundamental key to computing . Talk about a "micro" processer ..


14 posted on 10/12/2005 4:18:37 AM PDT by THEUPMAN (#### comment deleted by moderator)
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To: PatrickHenry

That electron voted for the $87 Billion, before it voted against it!


15 posted on 10/12/2005 4:19:27 AM PDT by gridlock (Eliminate Perverse Incentives)
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To: ShadowDancer

At Trekkie conventions, people always used to ask James Doohan (Scotty) how the Hiesenberg Compensators on the transporter worked. He would just reply, in his patented brogue, "Very well, thank you..."


16 posted on 10/12/2005 4:21:39 AM PDT by gridlock (Eliminate Perverse Incentives)
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To: THEUPMAN
in virtually the push of a button can be switched back and forth between these states

You mean, like Democrat votes?

17 posted on 10/12/2005 4:22:53 AM PDT by SlowBoat407 (The best things happen just before the thread snaps.)
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To: gridlock

Spelling correction: Heisenberg = Heisenberg.

I am always uncertain whether "e" or the "i" comes first.


18 posted on 10/12/2005 4:23:49 AM PDT by gridlock (Eliminate Perverse Incentives)
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To: ShadowDancer

Constant motion.

19 posted on 10/12/2005 4:24:35 AM PDT by Cagey (There are more planes in the ocean than submarines in the sky)
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To: will of the people
- It seems that democratic voters in some big cities exhibit the tendency to appear at multiple voting booths at the same time. Perhaps a single door (slit) at the polling place could cause these people to act more like particles and travel to only one booth?!

This is interesting, as I have twice read the title of this article to be: Can an Election...

20 posted on 10/12/2005 4:27:13 AM PDT by stayathomemom
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To: PatrickHenry
". In addition, the researchers succeeded in proving something long doubted: that a disruption of the reflective symmetry of this molecule leads to a partial loss of coherence through the introduction of two different heavy isotopes, in this case N14 and N15" I've been saying that since my 12th birthday...but did anyone listen? Noooooooo...
21 posted on 10/12/2005 4:29:07 AM PDT by Capitalism2003
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To: PatrickHenry

22 posted on 10/12/2005 4:29:40 AM PDT by Ichneumon (Certified pedantic coxcomb)
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To: gridlock
Spelling correction: Heisenberg = Heisenberg.

Isn't that more of a spelling tautology?

23 posted on 10/12/2005 4:31:33 AM PDT by Ichneumon (Certified pedantic coxcomb)
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To: All
The researchers provided evidence that disrupting the reflective symmetry of these molecules by introducing two different heavy isotopes, in this case N14 and N15, leads to a partial loss of coherence.

Tequilla in copious amounts can also account for this.

24 posted on 10/12/2005 4:47:30 AM PDT by BipolarBob (I'm really BagdadBob under the witness protection program.)
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To: Vaquero

When Doc Brown invented the flux capacitor, even time travel was within our grasp.


25 posted on 10/12/2005 4:50:02 AM PDT by BipolarBob (I'm really BagdadBob under the witness protection program.)
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To: gridlock
I am always uncertain whether "e" or the "i" comes first.

If it's pronounced "I" the "e" comes first but if it's pronounced "E" it's the other way around ;-)

26 posted on 10/12/2005 4:54:00 AM PDT by BMCDA (Whereof we cannot speak, thereof we must be silent. -- L. Wittgenstein)
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To: PatrickHenry
For an alternative description of the electron (with some experimental evidence) check this out: http://www.blacklightpower.com/
27 posted on 10/12/2005 5:24:35 AM PDT by RazzPutin ("You have told us more than you can possibly know." -- Niels Bohr)
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To: PatrickHenry
It can, according to Heisenberg. But I'm not sure.

And neither was he.

28 posted on 10/12/2005 5:25:13 AM PDT by IronJack
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To: HiTech RedNeck
"Upshot of this is that an electron needs two alibis."

LOL! That is so funny!

This reminds me of that idea that on the other side of the sun there is a twin planet Earth where we all have twins. Plus I've heard the saying that somewhere on Earth we all have a twin. Jerry Seinfeld or someone was talking about the German doppleganger and said he can't believe it is enough of a problem that they actually have a word for it!
29 posted on 10/12/2005 5:34:11 AM PDT by A knight without armor
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To: BMCDA
If it's pronounced "I" the "e" comes first but if it's pronounced "E" it's the other way around ;-)

I dunno. Better we go out and poison some cats in a box, just to make sure...

30 posted on 10/12/2005 5:49:46 AM PDT by gridlock (Eliminate Perverse Incentives)
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To: BMCDA

"I am always uncertain whether "e" or the "i" comes first.

If it's pronounced "I" the "e" comes first but if it's pronounced "E" it's the other way around ;-)"


I believe that's specifically for words that are of German origin. With "ie" or "ei" combinations, you pronounce the second letter.


31 posted on 10/12/2005 5:52:56 AM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: PatrickHenry

32 posted on 10/12/2005 6:00:27 AM PDT by Gumlegs
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To: PatrickHenry
Indeed, quantum physics has simply come to accept as a given over the years that there does not seem to be an independent reality. Physics has ceased questioning this, because experiments have confirmed it repeatedly and with a growing accuracy.

Codswallop. If an electron is in two places, it doesn't mean that there's no independent reality. It means that the independent reality is that the electron is in both places. "No independent reality" would mean that the electron is over here for me and over there for you, but this doesn't happen, not in quantum theory, and not in experiment.

If there were no such thing as independent reality, there'd be no possibility of a science of physics.

33 posted on 10/12/2005 6:05:01 AM PDT by Physicist
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To: BMCDA
...I am always uncertain whether "e" or the "i" comes first...

"I" before "E" except when it's wrong...(thank you, Dave Barry)

34 posted on 10/12/2005 6:12:01 AM PDT by martin gibson (I know not what course others may take, but as for myself, give me Ralph Stanley or give me death!!!)
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To: PatrickHenry
electrons - "both/and" and "either/or" exist side-by-side.

The Kerry Effect

35 posted on 10/12/2005 6:14:33 AM PDT by kanawa
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To: PatrickHenry

Obviously the Matrix is being unraveled. We have caught our reality between ticks of the master clock, and time, which is supposed to be seen as continuous, is not.

It's like the scene in The Truman Show, where we reach the edge of the world.

;-)


36 posted on 10/12/2005 6:21:40 AM PDT by js1138 (Great is the power of steady misrepresentation.)
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To: PatrickHenry

If evolution is a random series of events proceeding from the simple to the complex, exactly how do you explain the de-evolution of our species as personified by Matt Lauer and Katie Couric?


37 posted on 10/12/2005 6:22:29 AM PDT by Doc Savage (...because they stand on a wall, and they say nothing is going to hurt you tonight, not on my watch!)
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To: PatrickHenry

I am beginning to believe that “wave” and “particle” are artificial constructs we have created as a result of living and observing in the macro world for so long. In “reality” (what ever it may be) everything is composed of wave like particles – or particle like waves. Maybe a new word is needed.


38 posted on 10/12/2005 6:29:09 AM PDT by R. Scott (Humanity i love you because when you're hard up you pawn your Intelligence to buy a drink.)
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To: Gumlegs

AH! The Good Ole Daze!


39 posted on 10/12/2005 6:32:35 AM PDT by R. Scott (Humanity i love you because when you're hard up you pawn your Intelligence to buy a drink.)
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The CrevoSci Archive
Just one of the many services of Darwin Central
"The Conspiracy that Cares"

CrevoSci threads for the past week:

    OpenTag Date link Title closeTag Notes EndTag
  1. 2005-10-12 Can an Electron be in Two Places at the Same Time?
  2. 2005-10-11 Creationism Is Evolving... It Has No Choice
  3. 2005-10-11 Dinosaur-Bird Flap Ruffles Feathers
  4. 2005-10-11 Don’t settle for separate but equal (Dover trial Darwinists, are 'absurd' says YDR Editor)
  5. 2005-10-11 More bones of hobbit-sized humans discovered
  6. 2005-10-11 Warnings from the Ivory Towers
  7. 2005-10-10 Backward, Christian Soldiers! (Intel-Design supporters equivalent to 'Holocaust Deniers')
  8. 2005-10-10 Creationism concerns shadow Florida's new top educator
  9. 2005-10-10 Did feathered dinosaurs exist?
  10. 2005-10-10 EUGENICS - From Darwinism to Population Control
  11. 2005-10-10 Intelligent design's big ambitions - Advocates want much more than textbooks.
  12. 2005-10-10 Killer Findings: Scientists Piece Together 1918-Flu Virus
  13. 2005-10-10 Latest Study: Scientists Say No Evidence Exists
  14. 2005-10-09 Evolution of faith
  15. 2005-10-09 Gov. Bush [Florida] oddly evasive on evolution
  16. 2005-10-09 Putting Relativity To The Test, NASA's Gravity Probe B To Reveale If Einstein Was Right
  17. 2005-10-08 Famed author takes on Kansas: Rushdie bemoans role of religion in public life
  18. 2005-10-07 Descent of Man in Dover (Why acceptance of ID not inevitable.)
  19. 2005-10-07 Discovery Institute's “Wedge Document” How Darwinist Paranoia Fueled an Urban Legend
  20. 2005-10-07 Dover, PA Evolution Trial [daily thread for 07 Oct]
  21. 2005-10-07 Evolution and intelligent design Life is a cup of tea
  22. 2005-10-07 Let 'intelligent design' and science rumble
  23. 2005-10-07 The Las Cruces Fossil Human Footprints
  24. 2005-10-07 The Map that Changed the World [in 1815]
  25. 2005-10-07 University of Idaho Bans All Alternatives to Evolution
  26. 2005-10-07 Why Intelligent Design Is Going to Win
  27. 2005-10-06 Faith, Science and the Persecution of Richard Sternberg
  28. 2005-10-06 Scientist defends Big Bang and God
  29. 2005-10-06 Seeing Creation and Evolution in Grand Canyon (quote below is the most significant item)
  30. 2005-10-06 The Mouth of the South Side (Carl Everett on Gays, Evolution, Bush and Kanye West)
  31. 2005-10-06 U of I president:teach only evolution in {University}science classes (Connection to PA court fight)
  32. 2005-10-06 Witness: 'Design' Replaced 'Creation'
  33. 2005-10-06 Witness: Movement's roots in creationism (Dover trial 10/6/05)

CrevoSci Warrior Freepdays for the month of October:
 

2003-10-09 antiRepublicrat
2004-10-10 Antonello
1998-10-18 AZLiberty
1999-10-14 blam
2000-10-19 cogitator
2001-10-21 Coyoteman
2004-10-26 curiosity
1998-10-29 Dataman
2000-10-29 dila813
2005-10-07 Dinobot
2001-10-14 dread78645
1998-10-03 Elsie
1998-10-17 f.Christian
2002-10-08 FairOpinion
2001-10-26 Genesis defender
2000-10-09 Gil4
2000-10-08 guitarist
2004-10-10 joeclarke
1998-10-03 js1138
2001-10-24 k2blader
2000-10-08 LibWhacker
2002-10-25 m1-lightning
2001-10-10 Michael_Michaelangelo
2001-10-09 Mother Abigail
2004-10-25 MRMEAN
2004-10-03 Nicholas Conradin
1999-10-28 PatrickHenry
1998-10-01 Physicist
1998-10-25 plain talk
1998-10-12 Restorer
2005-10-04 ret_medic
2001-10-23 RightWingNilla
2004-10-09 snarks_when_bored
1998-10-04 Southack
2002-10-22 sumocide
2004-10-21 WildHorseCrash
2001-10-23 yankeedame
2002-10-20 Z in Oregon

In Memoriam
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general_re
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Bring back Modernman and SeaLion!

40 posted on 10/12/2005 6:39:01 AM PDT by Junior (From now on, I'll stick to science, and leave the hunting alien mutants to the experts!)
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To: PatrickHenry

Thanks for the ping!


41 posted on 10/12/2005 6:46:06 AM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: PatrickHenry
This looks like a classic.

If I ever figure it out.

42 posted on 10/12/2005 6:52:05 AM PDT by VadeRetro (I'll have a few sleepless nights after I send you over, sure! But it'll pass.)
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To: PatrickHenry
I cannot begin to say what they have measured without some additional information.

Was there a difference in the number of electrons striking the target and the number of electrons emitted? That is a fairly easy thing to measure.

I would like to know if there was a difference with and without the 2nd slit being closed.

Passing a stream of electrons through a pair of closely spaced slits and seeing an interference pattern similar to light would not be surprising as within that stream each electron would have some small effect on any other electrons near it, possibly pushing them to the side enough to go through the 2nd slit. All of this I have had to deal with in color CRT (picture tubes) construction.

To believe what they are saying would require understanding how 100 electrons could be emitted, some or all passing through 2 slits at the same time. Seems we would for a moment have more than 100 electrons and where did they come from?

As far as the duality, never liked that word and they may have seen too many episodes of Star Trek TNG. Duality was Counselor Troy's favorite word. New age mumbo jumbo.

43 posted on 10/12/2005 6:52:08 AM PDT by Wurlitzer (I have the biggest organ in my town {;o))
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To: R. Scott

You know, it's discussions (not the previous post specifically) like this that require the explanation of the postulates of quantum mechanics in the Freshman year of high school, instead of waiting to the sophmore/junior year for physics majors. Then we can just say that the electron is a quantum object and forget all of this wave/particle B.S.

The electron is a quantum system where the relative value of Planck's constant is large compared to the mutiplicand of momentum and distance. It is acting like a quantum system. We've had outstanding descriptions of this for the last 50 years. This experiment has done nothing but, once again, validate the accepted description for the umpteenth time. The electron is acting exactly like the math says it should. An electron is what it is and we can validate it's description down to 13 decimal places. There is no problem with independent reality here, and anyone who says there is is a COMPLETELY IGNORANT MORON!


44 posted on 10/12/2005 6:52:52 AM PDT by Netheron
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To: gridlock
Spelling correction: Heisenberg = Heisenberg.

You owe me two minutes of my life.

45 posted on 10/12/2005 6:54:09 AM PDT by VadeRetro (I'll have a few sleepless nights after I send you over, sure! But it'll pass.)
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To: Netheron
You know, it's discussions (not the previous post specifically) like this that require the explanation of the postulates of quantum mechanics in the Freshman year of high school, instead of waiting to the sophmore/junior year for physics majors. Then we can just say that the electron is a quantum object and forget all of this wave/particle B.S.

From what I have seen of high school textbooks, the atom is still described as being composed of three particles – with electrons orbiting around the nucleus like mini-solar systems.
I do like the use of “quantum object”. It keeps the reader from trying to visualize them as either a particle or wave. I’ll have to keep that term in mind.
46 posted on 10/12/2005 7:06:17 AM PDT by R. Scott (Humanity i love you because when you're hard up you pawn your Intelligence to buy a drink.)
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To: R. Scott

Yeah, they should put pictures of electron orbitals next to the solar system one and say that we'll show how to derive them after the student has learned some Calculus.

It really p****s me off when journalists, and especially textbook writers, go on about how weird and mysterious some physics concepts are when the actual concepts have been non-controversial for decades in the physics literature. I admit it could be strange to a novice, but don't leave the impression that a little more background won't cure the metaphysical vertigo. Doesn't anyone know that Newtonian mechanics was just as weird for most people back then as Quantum mechanics is now? Heck, once someone REALLY knows how to do Classical mechanics, Quantum mechanics is a very small extension.


47 posted on 10/12/2005 7:20:16 AM PDT by Netheron
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To: Gumlegs

"He's a real nowhere man..."


48 posted on 10/12/2005 7:26:36 AM PDT by furball4paws (One of the last Evil Geniuses, or the first of their return.)
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To: kanawa

I was gonna name such a particle a Kerrytron.


49 posted on 10/12/2005 7:27:27 AM PDT by dirtboy (Drool overflowed my buffer...)
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To: PatrickHenry
Use spatial engineering. Take the space that the electron is in, copy it, then move it.

There you go.

50 posted on 10/12/2005 7:30:55 AM PDT by <1/1,000,000th%
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