"The image that we have managed to capture is an elegant demonstration of a fundamental property of nature, seen for the first time," said Paul-Antoine Moreau, of the University of Glasgow, on an elusive phenomenon that Albert Einstein once disconcerted. called & ghostly action at a distance & # 39;Just under three months after astronomers captured the first image of a supermassive black hole, physicists have managed to take a photograph of a strong form of quantum entanglement called Bell's tangle: capture of visual evidence.
Two particles that interact with each other, like two photons that pass through a beam splitter, for example, can remain connected, instantly sharing their physical states no matter how large the distance that separates them. This connection is known as quantum entanglement, and supports the field of quantum mechanics.
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Einstein thought that quantum mechanics was "creepy" because of the snapshot of the apparent remote interaction between two entangled particles, which seemed incompatible with the elements of his special theory of relativity.
Later, Sir John Bell formalized this concept of non-local interaction that describes a strong form of entanglement that exhibits this fear. At present, although Bell's entanglement is exploited in practical applications such as quantum computing and cryptography, it has never been captured in a single image.
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In an article published today in the journal Science Advances, a team of physicists at the University of Glasgow describes how they have made Einstein's fear visible in an image for the first time.
They devised a system that triggers a stream of entangled photons from a quantum light source to "non-conventional objects" – displayed in liquid crystal materials that change the phase of the photons as they pass.
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They installed a super sensitive camera capable of detecting individual photons that would only take an image when they saw a photon and its entangled "twin", creating a visible record of the entanglement of photons.
"It's an exciting result that could be used to advance the emerging field of quantum computing and lead to new types of images."
The Daily Galaxy through the University of Glasgow