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  • richardmitnick 1:08 pm on June 18, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "New device gets scientists closer to quantum materials breakthrough", A new photonic device that could get scientists closer to the “holy grail” of finding the global minimum of mathematical formulations at room temperature., , , , Nebraska has prioritized quantum science and engineering as one of its Grand Challenges., , Quantum Physics, The breakthrough is enabled by adopting solution-grown halide perovskite-a famous material for solar cell communities and growing it under nanoconfinement.,   

    From The University of Nebraska -Lincoln: “New device gets scientists closer to quantum materials breakthrough” 

    From The University of Nebraska -Lincoln

    6.16.22
    Dan Moser | IANR News

    1
    Wei Bao, Nebraska assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering.

    Researchers from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and the University of California-Berkeley, have developed a new photonic device that could get scientists closer to the “holy grail” of finding the global minimum of mathematical formulations at room temperature. Finding that illusive mathematical value would be a major advancement in opening new options for simulations involving quantum materials.

    Many scientific questions depend heavily on being able to find that mathematical value, said Wei Bao, Nebraska assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering. The search can be challenging even for modern computers, especially when the dimensions of the parameters — commonly used in quantum physics — are extremely large.

    Until now, researchers could only do this with polariton optimization devices at extremely low temperatures, close to about minus 270 degrees Celsius. Bao said the Nebraska-UC Berkeley team “has found a way to combine the advantages of light and matter at room temperature suitable for this great optimization challenge.”

    The devices use quantum half-light and half-matter quasi-particles known as exciton-polaritons which recently emerged as a solid-state analog photonic simulation platform for quantum physics such as Bose-Einstein condensation and complex XY spin models.

    “Our breakthrough is enabled by adopting solution-grown halide perovskite-a famous material for solar cell communities and growing it under nanoconfinement,” Bao said. “This will produce exceptional smooth single-crystalline large crystals with great optical homogeneity, previously never reported at room temperature for a polariton system.”

    Bao is the corresponding author of a paper reporting this research, published in Nature Materials.

    “This is exciting,” said Xiang Zhang, Bao’s collaborator, now president of Hong Kong University but who completed this research as a mechanical engineering faculty member at UC Berkeley. “We show that XY spin lattice with a large number of coherently coupled condensates that can be constructed as a lattice with a size up to 10×10.”

    Its material properties also could enable future studies at room temperature rather than ultracold temperatures. Bao said, “We are just starting to explore the potential of a room temperature system for solving complex problems. Our work is a concrete step towards the long-sought room-temperature solid-state quantum simulation platform.

    “The solution synthesis method we reported with excellent thickness control for large ultra-homogenous halide perovskite can enable many interesting studies at room temperature, without the need” for complicated and expensive equipment and materials, Bao added. It also opens the door for simulating large calculational approaches and many other device applications, previously inaccessible at room temperature.

    This process is essential in the highly competitive era of quantum technologies, which are expected to transform the fields of information processing, sensing, communication, imaging and more.

    Nebraska has prioritized quantum science and engineering as one of its Grand Challenges. It was named a research priority because of the university’s expertise in this area and the impact Husker research can make on the exciting and promising field.

    Bao’s co-authors are Kai Peng, a postdoctoral researcher at Nebraska; Renjie Tao, Quanwei Li, Graham Fleming and Xiang Zhang of UC Berkeley; Dafei Jin of The DOE’s Argonne National Lab; and Louis Haeberlé and Stéphane Kéna-Cohen of Polytechnique Montréal.

    This work is primarily supported by the Office of Naval Research, NSF and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.

    See the full article here .


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    The University of Nebraska–Lincoln is a public research university in the city of Lincoln, in the state of Nebraska in the Midwestern United States. It is the state’s oldest university, and the largest in the University of Nebraska system.

    The state legislature chartered the university in 1869 as a land-grant university under the 1862 Morrill Act, two years after Nebraska’s statehood into the United States. Around the turn of the 20th century, the university began to expand significantly, hiring professors from eastern schools to teach in the newly organized professional colleges while also producing groundbreaking research in agricultural sciences. The “Nebraska method” of ecological study developed here during this time pioneered grassland ecology and laid the foundation for research in theoretical ecology for the rest of the 20th century. The university is organized into eight colleges on two campuses in Lincoln with over 100 classroom buildings and research facilities.

    Its athletic program, called the Cornhuskers, is a member of the Big Ten Conference. The Nebraska football team has won 46 conference championships, and since 1970, five national championships. The women’s volleyball team has won four national championships along with eight other appearances in the Final Four. The Husker football team plays its home games at Memorial Stadium, selling out every game since 1962. The stadium’s capacity is about 92,000 people, larger than the population of Nebraska’s third-largest city.

     
  • richardmitnick 4:44 am on June 2, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Quantum Physics, , , "Physicists wonder what comes after quantum?", "GPTs": generalized probabilistic theories-operational theories in which classical and quantum physics are special cases., A quantum bit or qubit can be both 0 and 1 and is a two-level system., A new approach allows data to inform an interpretation theory., In this experiment the team investigated a three-level system where the bits have three degrees of freedom rather than two. The quantum analog of a three-level system is called a qutrit., This research identified quantitative boundaries on the scope of possible deviations from quantum theory for three-level systems.   

    From The University of Waterloo (CA): “Physicists wonder what comes after quantum?” 

    U Waterloo bloc

    From The University of Waterloo (CA)

    May 18, 2022 [Just today in social media.]

    Quantum theory, the physics of the very small, helps us to understand nature and our world by explaining and predicting the behaviour of atoms and molecules. Researchers at the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) are interested in what comes after quantum theory, specifically the possibility of a broader theory that replaces quantum theory as a more complete description of nature.

    In 1900, while studying radiation, Max Planck observed that energy could behave in a way not consistent with classical physics. Twenty-years later a more fulsome understanding of matter emerged. Based on the research of physicists like Bohr, Schrödinger, and Heisenberg this new theory, quantum theory, accounted for the unpredictable nature Planck observed two decades before. In the same way that quantum physics built on our understanding of classical physics, a novel, post-quantum theory may build off our current understanding of quantum physics.

    As a master’s student with the Department of Physics and Astronomy and IQC, Michael Grabowecky was interested in exploring any potential deviations from quantum theory and identifying restrictions on any new potential theories.

    To test quantum theory against possible alternates, a neutral or theory agnostic approach was needed. This approach allows data to inform an interpretation theory. The team designed an experiment to collect a large amount of data from a three-level system, then work out a theory directly from the obtained data.

    “We do not assume any particular theory to be true before conducting the experiment. We want to make as little assumptions as possible, and we definitely don’t want to assume that quantum mechanics is true,” said Grabowecky. “The whole purpose of these kind of experiments is to let the statistics and the photons speak for themselves.”

    To minimize the experimental assumptions and take a theory-agnostic approach, the team used the framework of generalized probabilistic theories (GPTs). GPTs are operational theories in which classical and quantum physics are special cases. The team used GPTs because they require minimal assumptions and can be used to avoid any inherent quantum biases when conducting an experiment.

    A digital computer stores and processes information using bits, which can either be 0 or 1. A quantum bit or qubit can be both 0 and 1 and is a two-level system. In this experiment the team investigated a three-level system where the bits have three degrees of freedom rather than two. The quantum analog of a three-level system is called a qutrit.

    “We prepared a three-level system in a wide variety of ways and on each of those preparations, we performed a large number of measurements. The statistics associated with these random preparations and measurements were used to construct a physical theory describing our system,” said Grabowecky.

    The experiment found that quantum theory works well in describing the obtained data, but a broader theory beyond quantum may be possible. Furthermore, this research identified quantitative boundaries on the scope of possible deviations from quantum theory for three-level systems.

    Grabowecky, now the Quantum Technology Lab Coordinator at IQC, is excited by the potential of this research.

    The experimental data sets from this research can be used to test future theories that may supersede quantum theory and advance fundamental research.

    The science paper was published in Physical Review A on March 10, 2022.

    1
    Accepted 17 February 2022.

    See the full article here .

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    U Waterloo campus

    In just half a century, the The University of Waterloo (CA) located at the heart of Canada’s technology hub, has become a leading comprehensive university with nearly 36,000 full- and part-time students in undergraduate and graduate programs.

    Consistently ranked Canada’s most innovative university, Waterloo is home to advanced research and teaching in science and engineering, mathematics and computer science, health, environment, arts and social sciences. From quantum computing and nanotechnology to clinical psychology and health sciences research, Waterloo brings ideas and brilliant minds together, inspiring innovations with real impact today and in the future.

    As home to the world’s largest post-secondary co-operative education program, Waterloo embraces its connections to the world and encourages enterprising partnerships in learning, research, and commercialization. With campuses and education centres on four continents, and academic partnerships spanning the globe, Waterloo is shaping the future of the planet.

     
  • richardmitnick 1:55 pm on May 17, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , "Quantum magnets in motion", , Kardar-Parisi-Zhang superdiffusion, , , Quantum Physics, Spin: a specific magnetic quantum property of atoms and other particles, Spins also constitute the basis of certain forms of quantum computers., The scientists locked ultracold atoms in a specially formed "box-shaped" potential formed by an arrangement of tiny mirrors., The scientists studied the relaxation of a single magnetic domain wall in a chain of 50 linearly arranged spins., The work reveals an interesting connection between quantum mechanical spin systems in cold atoms and classical systems such as growing bacterial colonies or spreading wildfires.,   

    From MPG Institute for Quantum Optics [MPG Institut für Quantenoptik] (DE) via phys.org : “Quantum magnets in motion” 

    Max Planck Institut für Quantenoptik (DE)

    From MPG Institute for Quantum Optics [MPG Institut für Quantenoptik] (DE)

    via

    phys.org

    May 16, 2022

    1
    The Kardar-Parisi-Zhang universality combines classical everyday phenomena such as coffee stains with quantum mechanical spin chains in a surprising way. Credit: MPG Institute of Quantum Optics.

    The behavior of microscopic quantum magnets has long been a subject taught in lectures in theoretical physics. However, investigating the dynamics of systems that are far out of equilibrium and watching them “live” has been difficult so far. Now, researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics in Garching have accomplished precisely this, using a quantum gas microscope. With this tool, quantum systems can be manipulated and then imaged with such high resolution that even individual atoms are visible. The results of the experiments on linear chains of spins show that the way their orientation propagates corresponds to the so-called Kardar-Parisi-Zhang superdiffusion. This confirms a conjecture that recently emerged from theoretical considerations.

    A team of physicists around Dr. Johannes Zeiher and Prof Immanuel Bloch has eyes on objects that others hardly ever get to see. The researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (MPQ) in Garching use a so-called quantum gas microscope to track down processes on the tiny scale of quantum physics. Such an instrument allows—with the help of atoms and lasers—to specifically create quantum systems with desired properties and to investigate them with high resolution. In these experiments, the researchers also focus on transport phenomena—how quantum objects move under certain external conditions.

    The team has now made a surprising experimental discovery. The researchers were able to show that the one-dimensional transport of spins—the term “spin” stands for a specific, magnetic quantum property of atoms and other particles—resembles macroscopic phenomena in certain areas. For the most part, processes in the quantum realm and in the everyday world differ significantly. “But our work reveals an interesting connection between quantum mechanical spin systems in cold atoms and classical systems such as growing bacterial colonies or spreading wildfires,” says Johannes Zeiher, group leader in the Quantum Many-Body Systems division at MPQ. “This discovery is completely unexpected and points to a deep connection in the field of non-equilibrium physics that is still poorly understood.”

    Physicists refer to such a theoretical analogy between random motion in quantum and classical systems as “universality.” In this specific case, it is the Kardar-Parisi-Zhang universality (KPZ)—a phenomenon previously known only from classical physics.

    The telling exponent

    In order to observe the phenomenon microscopically, the Garching team first cooled down a cloud of atoms to temperatures close to absolute zero. That way, movements due to heat could be ruled out. Then they locked the ultracold atoms in a specially formed “box-shaped” potential, formed by an arrangement of tiny mirrors. “We used this to study the relaxation of a single magnetic domain wall in a chain of 50 linearly arranged spins,” explains David Wei, a researcher in Johannes Zeiher’s group. The domain wall separates areas with identical orientation of neighboring spins from each other. The researchers first created the domain wall for the experiment using a new trick, whereby an “effective magnetic field” was generated by projecting light. In doing so, the researchers can strongly suppress the couplings between spins, effectively “locking” them into place.

    The relaxation within the spin chain occurred after the couplings between spins were switched on in a controlled manner and, as it turned out, followed a characteristic pattern. “This can be described mathematically by a power law with the exponent 3/2,” says Wei—a hint at the connection with KPZ universality. Further evidence for this relationship was provided when the researchers detected the motion of individual spins, which was revealed through the quantum gas microscope.

    “This high precision was the basis for a detailed statistical evaluation,” says Zeiher. “The striking course of spin diffusion that our experiment showed corresponds in its mathematical form approximately to the spread of a coffee stain on a tablecloth, for example,” explains the Max Planck physicist. That such an astonishing connection could exist had been suspected by a team of theorists about two years ago on the basis of theoretical considerations. However, experimental confirmation of this hypothesis was still lacking.

    An old model amazes physicists

    For the description of quantum mechanical spin phenomena, physicists have been using the so-called Heisenberg model very successfully for a long time (but it was only recently that spin transport phenomena could be described theoretically within this model). “Our results show that surprising new insights are still possible even within an established theoretical framework,” Johannes Zeiher emphasizes. “And they are proof of how theory and experiment cross-fertilize in physics.”

    The results that have now been achieved by the team in Garching are not only of academic value. They could also be useful for tangible technical applications. For example, spins also constitute the basis of certain forms of quantum computers. Knowledge of the transport properties of the information carriers could be of critical importance for the practical realization of such novel computer architectures.

    The study appears in Science.

    See the full article here .

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    Research at the MPG Institute for Quantum Optics [Max Planck Institut für Quantenoptik ] (DE)
    Light can behave as an electromagnetic wave or a shower of particles that have no mass, called photons, depending on the conditions under which it is studied or used. Matter, on the other hand, is composed of particles, but it can actually exhibit wave-like properties, giving rise to many astonishing phenomena in the microcosm.

    At our institute we explore the interaction of light and quantum systems, exploiting the two extreme regimes of the wave-particle duality of light and matter. On the one hand we handle light at the single photon level where wave-interference phenomena differ from those of intense light beams. On the other hand, when cooling ensembles of massive particles down to extremely low temperatures we suddenly observe phenomena that go back to their wave-like nature. Furthermore, when dealing with ultrashort and highly intense light pulses comprising trillions of photons we can completely neglect the particle properties of light. We take advantage of the large force that the rapidly oscillating electromagnetic field exerts on electrons to steer their motion within molecules or accelerate them to relativistic energies.

    MPG Society for the Advancement of Science [MPG Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Wissenschaften e. V.] is a formally independent non-governmental and non-profit association of German research institutes founded in 1911 as the Kaiser Wilhelm Society and renamed the Max Planck Society in 1948 in honor of its former president, theoretical physicist Max Planck. The society is funded by the federal and state governments of Germany as well as other sources.

    According to its primary goal, the MPG Society supports fundamental research in the natural, life and social sciences, the arts and humanities in its 83 (as of January 2014) MPG Institutes. The society has a total staff of approximately 17,000 permanent employees, including 5,470 scientists, plus around 4,600 non-tenured scientists and guests. Society budget for 2015 was about €1.7 billion.

    The MPG Institutes focus on excellence in research. The MPG Society has a world-leading reputation as a science and technology research organization, with 33 Nobel Prizes awarded to their scientists, and is generally regarded as the foremost basic research organization in Europe and the world. In 2013, the Nature Publishing Index placed the MPG institutes fifth worldwide in terms of research published in Nature journals (after Harvard University, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford University and The National Institutes of Health). In terms of total research volume (unweighted by citations or impact), the Max Planck Society is only outranked by The Chinese Academy of Sciences [中国科学院](CN), The Russian Academy of Sciences [Росси́йская акаде́мия нау́к](RU) and Harvard University. The Thomson Reuters-Science Watch website placed the MPG Society as the second leading research organization worldwide following Harvard University, in terms of the impact of the produced research over science fields.

    The MPG Society and its predecessor Kaiser Wilhelm Society hosted several renowned scientists in their fields, including Otto Hahn, Werner Heisenberg, and Albert Einstein.

    History

    The organization was established in 1911 as the Kaiser Wilhelm Society, or Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gesellschaft (KWG), a non-governmental research organization named for the then German emperor. The KWG was one of the world’s leading research organizations; its board of directors included scientists like Walther Bothe, Peter Debye, Albert Einstein, and Fritz Haber. In 1946, Otto Hahn assumed the position of President of KWG, and in 1948, the society was renamed the Max Planck Society (MPG) after its former President (1930–37) Max Planck, who died in 1947.

    The MPG Society has a world-leading reputation as a science and technology research organization. In 2006, the Times Higher Education Supplement rankings of non-university research institutions (based on international peer review by academics) placed the MPG Society as No.1 in the world for science research, and No.3 in technology research (behind AT&T Corporation and The DOE’s Argonne National Laboratory.

    The domain mpg.de attracted at least 1.7 million visitors annually by 2008 according to a Compete.com study.

    MPG Institutes and research groups

    The MPG Society consists of over 80 research institutes. In addition, the society funds a number of Max Planck Research Groups (MPRG) and International Max Planck Research Schools (IMPRS). The purpose of establishing independent research groups at various universities is to strengthen the required networking between universities and institutes of the Max Planck Society.
    The research units are primarily located across Europe with a few in South Korea and the U.S. In 2007, the Society established its first non-European centre, with an institute on the Jupiter campus of Florida Atlantic University (US) focusing on neuroscience.
    The MPG Institutes operate independently from, though in close cooperation with, the universities, and focus on innovative research which does not fit into the university structure due to their interdisciplinary or transdisciplinary nature or which require resources that cannot be met by the state universities.

    Internally, MPG Institutes are organized into research departments headed by directors such that each MPI has several directors, a position roughly comparable to anything from full professor to department head at a university. Other core members include Junior and Senior Research Fellows.

    In addition, there are several associated institutes:

    International Max Planck Research Schools

    International Max Planck Research Schools

    Together with the Association of Universities and other Education Institutions in Germany, the Max Planck Society established numerous International Max Planck Research Schools (IMPRS) to promote junior scientists:

    • Cologne Graduate School of Ageing Research, Cologne
    • International Max Planck Research School for Intelligent Systems, at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems located in Tübingen and Stuttgart
    • International Max Planck Research School on Adapting Behavior in a Fundamentally Uncertain World (Uncertainty School), at the Max Planck Institutes for Economics, for Human Development, and/or Research on Collective Goods
    • International Max Planck Research School for Analysis, Design and Optimization in Chemical and Biochemical Process Engineering, Magdeburg
    • International Max Planck Research School for Astronomy and Cosmic Physics, Heidelberg at the MPI for Astronomy
    • International Max Planck Research School for Astrophysics, Garching at the MPI for Astrophysics
    • International Max Planck Research School for Complex Surfaces in Material Sciences, Berlin
    • International Max Planck Research School for Computer Science, Saarbrücken
    • International Max Planck Research School for Earth System Modeling, Hamburg
    • International Max Planck Research School for Elementary Particle Physics, Munich, at the MPI for Physics
    • International Max Planck Research School for Environmental, Cellular and Molecular Microbiology, Marburg at the Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology
    • International Max Planck Research School for Evolutionary Biology, Plön at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology
    • International Max Planck Research School “From Molecules to Organisms”, Tübingen at the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology
    • International Max Planck Research School for Global Biogeochemical Cycles, Jena at the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry
    • International Max Planck Research School on Gravitational Wave Astronomy, Hannover and Potsdam MPI for Gravitational Physics
    • International Max Planck Research School for Heart and Lung Research, Bad Nauheim at the Max Planck Institute for Heart and Lung Research
    • International Max Planck Research School for Infectious Diseases and Immunity, Berlin at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology
    • International Max Planck Research School for Language Sciences, Nijmegen
    • International Max Planck Research School for Neurosciences, Göttingen
    • International Max Planck Research School for Cognitive and Systems Neuroscience, Tübingen
    • International Max Planck Research School for Marine Microbiology (MarMic), joint program of the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology in Bremen, the University of Bremen, the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in Bremerhaven, and the Jacobs University Bremen
    • International Max Planck Research School for Maritime Affairs, Hamburg
    • International Max Planck Research School for Molecular and Cellular Biology, Freiburg
    • International Max Planck Research School for Molecular and Cellular Life Sciences, Munich
    • International Max Planck Research School for Molecular Biology, Göttingen
    • International Max Planck Research School for Molecular Cell Biology and Bioengineering, Dresden
    • International Max Planck Research School Molecular Biomedicine, program combined with the ‘Graduate Programm Cell Dynamics And Disease’ at the University of Münster and the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Biomedicine
    • International Max Planck Research School on Multiscale Bio-Systems, Potsdam
    • International Max Planck Research School for Organismal Biology, at the University of Konstanz and the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology
    • International Max Planck Research School on Reactive Structure Analysis for Chemical Reactions (IMPRS RECHARGE), Mülheim an der Ruhr, at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Energy Conversion
    • International Max Planck Research School for Science and Technology of Nano-Systems, Halle at Max Planck Institute of Microstructure Physics
    • International Max Planck Research School for Solar System Science at the University of Göttingen hosted by MPI for Solar System Research
    • International Max Planck Research School for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Bonn, at the MPI for Radio Astronomy (formerly the International Max Planck Research School for Radio and Infrared Astronomy)
    • International Max Planck Research School for the Social and Political Constitution of the Economy, Cologne
    • International Max Planck Research School for Surface and Interface Engineering in Advanced Materials, Düsseldorf at Max Planck Institute for Iron Research GmbH
    • International Max Planck Research School for Ultrafast Imaging and Structural Dynamics, Hamburg

    Max Planck Schools

    • Max Planck School of Cognition
    • Max Planck School Matter to Life
    • Max Planck School of Photonics

    Max Planck Center

    • The Max Planck Centre for Attosecond Science (MPC-AS), POSTECH Pohang
    • The Max Planck POSTECH Center for Complex Phase Materials, POSTECH Pohang

    Max Planck Institutes

    Among others:
    • Max Planck Institute for Neurobiology of Behavior – caesar, Bonn
    • Max Planck Institute for Aeronomics in Katlenburg-Lindau was renamed to Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research in 2004;
    • Max Planck Institute for Biology in Tübingen was closed in 2005;
    • Max Planck Institute for Cell Biology in Ladenburg b. Heidelberg was closed in 2003;
    • Max Planck Institute for Economics in Jena was renamed to the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History in 2014;
    • Max Planck Institute for Ionospheric Research in Katlenburg-Lindau was renamed to Max Planck Institute for Aeronomics in 1958;
    • Max Planck Institute for Metals Research, Stuttgart
    • Max Planck Institute of Oceanic Biology in Wilhelmshaven was renamed to Max Planck Institute of Cell Biology in 1968 and moved to Ladenburg 1977;
    • Max Planck Institute for Psychological Research in Munich merged into the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in 2004;
    • Max Planck Institute for Protein and Leather Research in Regensburg moved to Munich 1957 and was united with the Max Planck Institute for Biochemistry in 1977;
    • Max Planck Institute for Virus Research in Tübingen was renamed as Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology in 1985;
    • Max Planck Institute for the Study of the Scientific-Technical World in Starnberg (from 1970 until 1981 (closed)) directed by Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker and Jürgen Habermas.
    • Max Planck Institute for Behavioral Physiology
    • Max Planck Institute of Experimental Endocrinology
    • Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Social Law
    • Max Planck Institute for Physics and Astrophysics
    • Max Planck Research Unit for Enzymology of Protein Folding

     
  • richardmitnick 12:17 pm on May 16, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Unusual quantum state of matter observed for the first time at UdeM", , “Quantum spin liquid” state, , In quantum physics spin is an internal property of electrons linked to their rotation. It is spin that gives the material in a magnet its magnetic properties., In quantum spin liquids the electrons are positioned in a triangular lattice and form a “ménage à trois” characterized by intense turbulence that interferes with their order., Magnetism, Quantum Physics,   

    From The University of Montréal [Université de Montréal] (CA) : “Unusual quantum state of matter observed for the first time at UdeM” 

    From The University of Montréal [Université de Montréal] (CA)

    05/09/2022
    Martin LaSalle

    1
    Physicist Andrea Bianchi has observed the “quantum spin liquid” state in a magnetic material created in his lab.

    It’s not every day that someone comes across a new state of matter in quantum physics, the scientific field devoted to describing the behaviour of atomic and subatomic particles in order to elucidate their properties.

    Yet this is exactly what an international team of researchers that includes Andrea Bianchi, University of Montreal physics professor and researcher at the Regroupement québécois sur les matériaux de pointe, and his students Avner Fitterman and Jérémi Dudemaine has done.

    In a recent article published in the scientific journal Physical Review X, the researchers document a “quantum spin liquid ground state” in a magnetic material created in Bianchi’s lab: Ce2Zr2O7, a compound composed of cerium, zirconium and oxygen.

    Like a liquid locked inside an extremely cold solid.

    In quantum physics, spin is an internal property of electrons linked to their rotation. It is spin that gives the material in a magnet its magnetic properties.

    In some materials, spin results in a disorganized structure similar to that of molecules in a liquid, hence the expression “spin liquid.”

    In general, a material becomes more disorganized as its temperature rises. This is the case, for example, when water turns into steam. But the principal characteristic of spin liquids is that they remain disorganized even when cooled to as low as absolute zero (–273°C).

    Spin liquids remain disorganized because the direction of spin continues to fluctuate as the material is cooled instead of stabilizing in a solid state, as it does in a conventional magnet, in which all the spins are aligned.

    The art of “frustrating” electrons

    Imagine an electron as a tiny compass that points either up or down. In conventional magnets, the electron spins are all oriented in the same direction, up or down, creating what is known as a “ferromagnetic phase.” This is what keeps photos and notes pinned to your fridge.

    But in quantum spin liquids, the electrons are positioned in a triangular lattice and form a “ménage à trois” characterized by intense turbulence that interferes with their order. The result is an entangled wave function and no magnetic order.

    “When a third electron is added, the electron spins cannot align because the two neighbouring electrons must always have opposing spins, creating what we call magnetic frustration,” Bianchi explained. “This generates excitations that maintain the disorder of spins and therefore the liquid state, even at very low temperatures.”

    So how did they add a third electron and cause such frustration?

    Creating a ménage à trois

    Enter the frustrated magnet Ce2Zr2O7 created by Bianchi in his lab. To his already long list of accomplishments in developing advanced materials like superconductors, we can now add “master of the art of frustrating magnets”!

    Ce2Zr2O7 is a cerium-based material with magnetic properties. “The existence of this compound was known,” said Bianchi. “Our breakthrough was creating it in a uniquely pure form. We used samples melted in an optical furnace to produce a near-perfect triangular arrangement of atoms and then checked the quantum state.”

    It was this near-perfect triangle that enabled Bianchi and his team at UdeM to create magnetic frustration in Ce2Zr2O7. Working with researchers at McMaster and Colorado State universities, Los Alamos National Laboratory and the Max Planck Institute for the Physics of Complex System in Dresden, Germany, they measured the compound’s magnetic diffusion.

    “Our measurements showed an overlapping particle function—therefore no Bragg peaks—a clear sign of the absence of classical magnetic order,” said Bianchi. “We also observed a distribution of spins with continuously fluctuating directions, which is characteristic of spin liquids and magnetic frustration. This indicates that the material we created behaves like a true spin liquid at low temperatures.”

    From dream to reality

    After corroborating these observations with computer simulations, the team concluded that they were indeed witnessing a never-before-seen quantum state.

    “Identifying a new quantum state of matter is a dream come true for every physicist,” said Bianchi. “Our material is revolutionary because we are the first to show it can indeed present as a spin liquid. This discovery could open the door to new approaches in designing quantum computers.”

    Frustrated magnets in a nutshell

    3

    Magnetism is a collective phenomenon in which the electrons in a material all spin in the same direction. An everyday example is the ferromagnet, which owes its magnetic properties to the alignment of spins. Neighbouring electrons can also spin in opposite directions. In this case, the spins still have well-defined directions but there is no magnetization. Frustrated magnets are frustrated because the neighbouring electrons try to orient their spins in opposing directions, and when they find themselves in a triangular lattice, they can no longer settle on a common, stable arrangement. The result: a frustrated magnet.

    See the full article here.

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    The Université de Montréal is a French-language public research university in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The university’s main campus is located on the northern slope of Mount Royal in the neighbourhoods of Outremont and Côte-des-Neiges. The institution comprises thirteen faculties, more than sixty departments and two affiliated schools: the Polytechnique Montréal (School of Engineering; formerly the École Polytechnique de Montréal) and HEC Montréal (School of Business). It offers more than 650 undergraduate programmes and graduate programmes, including 71 doctoral programmes.

    The university was founded as a satellite campus of the Université Laval in 1878. It became an independent institution after it was issued a papal charter in 1919 and a provincial charter in 1920. Université de Montréal moved from Montreal’s Quartier Latin to its present location at Mount Royal in 1942. It was made a secular institution with the passing of another provincial charter in 1967.

    The school is co-educational, and has 34,335 undergraduate and 11,925 post-graduate students (excluding affiliated schools). Alumni and former students reside across Canada and around the world, with notable alumni serving as government officials, academics, and business leaders.

    Research

    Université de Montréal is a member of the U15, a group that represents 15 Canadian research universities. The university includes 465 research units and departments. In 2018, Research Infosource ranked the university third in their list of top 50 research universities; with a sponsored research income (external sources of funding) of $536.238 million in 2017. In the same year, the university’s faculty averaged a sponsored research income of $271,000, while its graduates averaged a sponsored research income of $33,900.

    Université de Montréal research performance has been noted in several bibliometric university rankings, which uses citation analysis to evaluate the impact a university has on academic publications. In 2019, The Performance Ranking of Scientific Papers for World Universities ranked the university 104th in the world, and fifth in Canada. The University Ranking by Academic Performance 2018–19 rankings placed the university 99th in the world, and fifth in Canada.

    Since 2017, Université de Montréal has partnered with the McGill University (CA) on Mila (research institute), a community of professors, students, industrial partners and startups working in AI, with over 500 researchers making the institute the world’s largest academic research center in deep learning. The institute was originally founded in 1993 by Professor Yoshua Bengio.

     
  • richardmitnick 8:42 am on May 7, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "A new study reveals that quantum physics can cause mutations in our DNA", , , , Proton tunnelling - a purely quantum phenomenon, Proton tunnelling involves the spontaneous disappearance of a proton from one location and the same proton's re-appearance nearby., Quantum Biology, Quantum Physics, , While the idea that something can be present in two places at the same time might be absurd to many of us this happens all the time in the quantum world.   

    From The University of Surrey (UK): “A new study reveals that quantum physics can cause mutations in our DNA” 

    From The University of Surrey (UK)

    22 February 2021 [Just now in social media.]

    1
    Credit: Getty Images.

    Quantum biology is an emerging field of science, established in the 1920s, which looks at whether the subatomic world of quantum mechanics plays a role in living cells. Quantum mechanics is an interdisciplinary field by nature, bringing together nuclear physicists, biochemists and molecular biologists.

    In a research paper published by the journal Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, a team from Surrey’s Leverhulme Quantum Biology Doctoral Training Centre used state-of-the-art computer simulations and quantum mechanical methods to determine the role proton tunnelling, a purely quantum phenomenon, plays in spontaneous mutations inside DNA.

    Proton tunnelling involves the spontaneous disappearance of a proton from one location and the same proton’s re-appearance nearby.

    The research team found that atoms of hydrogen, which are very light, provide the bonds that hold the two strands of the DNA’s double helix together and can, under certain conditions, behave like spread-out waves that can exist in multiple locations at once, thanks to proton tunnelling. This leads to these atoms occasionally being found on the wrong strand of DNA, leading to mutations.

    Although these mutations’ lifetime is short, the team from Surrey has revealed that they can still survive the DNA replication mechanism inside cells and could potentially have health consequences.

    Dr Marco Sacchi, the project lead and Royal Society University Research Fellow at the University of Surrey, said: “Many have long suspected that the quantum world – which is weird, counter-intuitive and wonderful – plays a role in life as we know it. While the idea that something can be present in two places at the same time might be absurd to many of us, this happens all the time in the quantum world, and our study confirms that quantum tunnelling also happens in DNA at room temperature.”

    Louie Slocombe, a PhD student at the Leverhulme Quantum Biology Doctoral Training Centre and co-author of the study, said: “There is still a long and exciting road ahead of us to understand how biological processes work on the subatomic level, but our study – and countless others over the recent years – have confirmed quantum mechanics are at play. In the future, we are hoping to investigate how tautomers produced by quantum tunnelling can propagate and generate genetic mutations.”

    Jim Al-Khalili, a co-author of the study and Co-Director of the Leverhulme Quantum Biology Doctoral Training Centre at the University of Surrey, said: “It has been thrilling to work with this group of young, diverse and talented thinkers – made up of a broad coalition of the scientific world. This work cements quantum biology as the most exciting field of scientific research in the 21st century.”

    See the full article here .

    five-ways-keep-your-child-safe-school-shootings

    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The University of Surrey is a public research university in Guildford, Surrey, England. The university received its royal charter in 1966, along with a number of other institutions following recommendations in the Robbins Report. The institution was previously known as Battersea College of Technology and was located in Battersea Park, London. Its roots however, go back to Battersea Polytechnic Institute, founded in 1891 to provide further and higher education in London, including its poorer inhabitants. The university’s research output and global partnerships have led to it being regarded as one of the UK’s leading research universities.

    The university is a member of the Association of MBAs and is one of four universities in the University Global Partnership Network. It is also part of the SETsquared partnership (UK) along with The University of Bath (UK), The University of Bristol (UK), the University of Southampton (UK) and The University of Exeter (UK). The university’s main campus is on Stag Hill, close to the centre of Guildford and adjacent to Guildford Cathedral. Surrey Sports Park is situated at the nearby Manor Park, the university’s secondary campus. Among British universities, the University of Surrey had the 14th highest average UCAS Tariff for new entrants in 2015.

    A major centre for satellite and mobile communications research, the university is in partnership with King’s College London (UK) and the Dresden University of Technology [Technische Universität Dresden] (DE) to develop 5G technology worldwide. It also holds a number of formal links with institutions worldwide, including the Surrey International Institute (UK), launched in partnership with the Dongbei University of Finance and Economics [东北财经大学](DUFE) (CN). The university owns the Surrey Research Park, providing facilities for over 110 companies engaged in research. Surrey has been awarded three Queen’s Anniversary Prizes for its research, with the 2014 Research Excellence Framework ranking 78% of the university’s research outputs as “world leading” or “internationally excellent”. It was named as The Sunday Times University of the Year in 2016.

    Current and emeritus academics at the university include ten Fellows of the Royal Society, twenty-one Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering, one Fellow of the British Academy and six Fellows of the Academy of Social Sciences. Surrey has educated many notable alumni, including Olympic gold medallists, several senior politicians, as well as a number of notable persons in various fields including the arts, sports and academia. Graduates typically abbreviate the University of Surrey to Sur when using post-nominal letters after their degree.

    Research

    The university conducts extensive research on small satellites, with its Surrey Space Centre and spin-off commercial company, Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd. In the 2001 Research Assessment Exercise, the University of Surrey received a 5* rating in the categories of “Sociology”, “Other Studies and Professions Allied to Medicine”, and “Electrical and Electronic Engineering” and a 5* rating in the categories of “Psychology”, “Physics”, “Applied Mathematics”, “Statistics and Operational Research”, “European Studies” and “Russian, Slavonic and East European Languages”.

    The 5G Innovation Centre (5GIC) at the University of Surrey opened in September 2015, for the purpose of research for the development of the first worldwide 5G network. It has gained over £40m support from international telecommunications companies including Aeroflex, MYCOM OSI, BBC, BT Group, EE (telecommunications company), Fujitsu Laboratories of Europe, Huawei, Ofcom, Rohde & Schwarz, Samsung, Telefonica and Vodafone – and a further £11.6m from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE).

    In addition, the Surrey Research Park is a 28 ha (69-acre) low density development which is owned and developed by the university, providing large landscaped areas with water features and facilities for over 110 companies engaged in a broad spectrum of research, development and design activities. The university generates the third highest endowment income out of all UK universities “reflecting its commercially-orientated heritage.”

     
  • richardmitnick 8:33 am on April 29, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "'Visualizing the Proton' through animation and film", An innovative animation conveys the current understanding of the structure of the proton., , “Visualizing the Proton” is an original animation of the proton intended for use in high school classrooms., , Electron Ion Collider at The DOE’s Brookhaven National Laboratory, , , Quantum Physics, Still renderings of the proton are inherently limited and unable to depict the motion of quarks and gluons.,   

    From The Massachusetts Institute of Technology: “‘Visualizing the Proton’ through animation and film” 

    From The Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    April 25, 2022
    Sarah Costello | School of Science


    Visualizing the Proton.


    An innovative animation conveys the current understanding of the structure of the proton.
    Image: James LaPlante/Sputnik Animation.


    “Visualizing the Proton” is an original animation of the proton, intended for use in high school classrooms.
    Animation courtesy of the “Visualizing the Proton” team.

    Try to picture a proton — the minute, positively charged particle within an atomic nucleus — and you may imagine a familiar, textbook diagram: a bundle of billiard balls representing quarks and gluons. From the solid sphere model first proposed by John Dalton in 1803 to the quantum model put forward by Erwin Schrödinger in 1926, there is a storied timeline of physicists trying to visualize the invisible.

    Now, MIT professor of physics Richard Milner, The DOE’s Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility physicists Rolf Ent and Rik Yoshida, MIT documentary filmmakers Chris Boebel and Joe McMaster, and Sputnik Animation’s James LaPlante have teamed up to depict the subatomic world in a new way. Presented by MIT Center for Art, Science & Technology (CAST) and Jefferson Lab, Visualizing the Proton is an original animation of the proton, intended for use in high school classrooms. Ent and Milner presented the animation in contributed talks at the April meeting of the American Physics Society and also shared it at a community event hosted by MIT Open Space Programming on April 20. In addition to the animation, a short documentary film about the collaborative process is in progress.

    It’s a project that Milner and Ent have been thinking about since at least 2004 when Frank Wilczek, the Herman Feshbach Professor of Physics at MIT, shared an animation in his Nobel Lecture on quantum chromodynamics (QCD), a theory that predicts the existence of gluons in the proton. “There’s an enormously strong MIT lineage to the subject,” Milner points out, also referencing the 1990 Nobel Prize in Physics, awarded to Jerome Friedman and Henry Kendall of MIT and Richard Taylor of The DOE’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory for their pioneering research confirming the existence of quarks.

    For starters, the physicists thought animation would be an effective medium to explain the science behind the Electron Ion Collider, a new particle accelerator from the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science — which many MIT faculty, including Milner, as well as colleagues like Ent, have long advocated for.

    Moreover, still renderings of the proton are inherently limited, unable to depict the motion of quarks and gluons. “Essential parts of the physics involve animation, color, particles annihilating and disappearing, quantum mechanics, relativity. It’s almost impossible to convey this without animation,” says Milner.

    In 2017, Milner was introduced to Boebel and McMaster, who in turn pulled LaPlante on board. Milner “had an intuition that a visualization of their collective work would be really, really valuable,” recalls Boebel of the project’s beginnings. They applied for a CAST faculty grant, and the team’s idea started to come to life.

    “The CAST Selection Committee was intrigued by the challenge and saw it as a wonderful opportunity to highlight the process involved in making the animation of the proton as well as the animation itself,” says Leila Kinney, executive director of arts initiatives and of CAST. “True art-science collaborations are more complex than science communication or science visualization projects. They involve bringing together different, equally sophisticated modes of making creative discoveries and interpretive decisions. It is important to understand the possibilities, limitations, and choices already embedded in the visual technology selected to visualize the proton. We hope people come away with better understanding of visual interpretation as a mode of critical inquiry and knowledge production, as well as physics.”

    Boebel and McMaster filmed the process of creating such a visual interpretation from behind the scenes. “It’s always challenging when you bring together people who are truly world-class experts, but from different realms, and ask them to talk about something technical,” says McMaster of the team’s efforts to produce something both scientifically accurate and visually appealing. “Their enthusiasm is really infectious.”

    In February 2020, animator LaPlante welcomed the scientists and filmmakers to his studio in Maine to share his first ideation. Although understanding the world of quantum physics posed a unique challenge, he explains, “One of the advantages I have is that I don’t come from a scientific background. My goal is always to wrap my head around the science and then figure out, ‘OK, well, what does it look like?’”

    Gluons, for example, have been described as springs, elastics, and vacuums. LaPlante imagined the particle, thought to hold quarks together, as a tub of slime. If you put your closed fist in and try to open it, you create a vacuum of air, making it harder to open your fist because the surrounding material wants to reel it in.

    LaPlante was also inspired to use his 3D software to “freeze time” and fly around a motionless proton, only for the physicists to inform him that such an interpretation was inaccurate based on the existing data. Particle accelerators can only detect a two-dimensional slice. In fact, three-dimensional data is something scientists hope to capture in their next stage of experimentation. They had all come up against the same wall — and the same question — despite approaching the topic in entirely different ways.

    “My art is really about clarity of communication and trying to get complex science to something that’s understandable,” says LaPlante. Much like in science, getting things wrong is often the first step of his artistic process. However, his initial attempt at the animation was a hit with the physicists, and they excitedly refined the project over Zoom.

    “There are two basic knobs that experimentalists can dial when we scatter an electron off a proton at high energy,” Milner explains, much like spatial resolution and shutter speed in photography. “Those camera variables have direct analogies in the mathematical language of physicists describing this scattering.”

    As “exposure time,” or Bjorken-X, which in QCD is the physical interpretation of the fraction of the proton’s momentum carried by one quark or gluon, is lowered, you see the proton as an almost infinite number of gluons and quarks moving very quickly. If Bjorken-X is raised, you see three blobs, or Valence quarks, in red, blue, and green. As spatial resolution is dialed, the proton goes from being a spherical object to a pancaked object.

    “We think we’ve invented a new tool,” says Milner. “There are basic science questions: How are the gluons distributed in a proton? Are they uniform? Are they clumped? We don’t know. These are basic, fundamental questions that we can animate. We think it’s a tool for communication, understanding, and scientific discussion.

    “This is the start. I hope people see it around the world, and they get inspired.”

    See the full article here .


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    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    MIT Seal

    USPS “Forever” postage stamps celebrating Innovation at MIT.

    MIT Campus

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology is a private land-grant research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The institute has an urban campus that extends more than a mile (1.6 km) alongside the Charles River. The institute also encompasses a number of major off-campus facilities such as the MIT Lincoln Laboratory , the MIT Bates Research and Engineering Center , and the Haystack Observatory , as well as affiliated laboratories such as the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard and Whitehead Institute.

    Massachusettes Institute of Technology-Haystack Observatory Westford, Massachusetts, USA, Altitude 131 m (430 ft).

    Founded in 1861 in response to the increasing industrialization of the United States, Massachusetts Institute of Technology adopted a European polytechnic university model and stressed laboratory instruction in applied science and engineering. It has since played a key role in the development of many aspects of modern science, engineering, mathematics, and technology, and is widely known for its innovation and academic strength. It is frequently regarded as one of the most prestigious universities in the world.

    As of December 2020, 97 Nobel laureates, 26 Turing Award winners, and 8 Fields Medalists have been affiliated with MIT as alumni, faculty members, or researchers. In addition, 58 National Medal of Science recipients, 29 National Medals of Technology and Innovation recipients, 50 MacArthur Fellows, 80 Marshall Scholars, 3 Mitchell Scholars, 22 Schwarzman Scholars, 41 astronauts, and 16 Chief Scientists of the U.S. Air Force have been affiliated with The Massachusetts Institute of Technology . The university also has a strong entrepreneurial culture and MIT alumni have founded or co-founded many notable companies. Massachusetts Institute of Technology is a member of the Association of American Universities (AAU).

    Foundation and vision

    In 1859, a proposal was submitted to the Massachusetts General Court to use newly filled lands in Back Bay, Boston for a “Conservatory of Art and Science”, but the proposal failed. A charter for the incorporation of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, proposed by William Barton Rogers, was signed by John Albion Andrew, the governor of Massachusetts, on April 10, 1861.

    Rogers, a professor from the University of Virginia , wanted to establish an institution to address rapid scientific and technological advances. He did not wish to found a professional school, but a combination with elements of both professional and liberal education, proposing that:

    “The true and only practicable object of a polytechnic school is, as I conceive, the teaching, not of the minute details and manipulations of the arts, which can be done only in the workshop, but the inculcation of those scientific principles which form the basis and explanation of them, and along with this, a full and methodical review of all their leading processes and operations in connection with physical laws.”

    The Rogers Plan reflected the German research university model, emphasizing an independent faculty engaged in research, as well as instruction oriented around seminars and laboratories.

    Early developments

    Two days after The Massachusetts Institute of Technology was chartered, the first battle of the Civil War broke out. After a long delay through the war years, MIT’s first classes were held in the Mercantile Building in Boston in 1865. The new institute was founded as part of the Morrill Land-Grant Colleges Act to fund institutions “to promote the liberal and practical education of the industrial classes” and was a land-grant school. In 1863 under the same act, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts founded the Massachusetts Agricultural College, which developed as the University of Massachusetts Amherst ). In 1866, the proceeds from land sales went toward new buildings in the Back Bay.

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology was informally called “Boston Tech”. The institute adopted the European polytechnic university model and emphasized laboratory instruction from an early date. Despite chronic financial problems, the institute saw growth in the last two decades of the 19th century under President Francis Amasa Walker. Programs in electrical, chemical, marine, and sanitary engineering were introduced, new buildings were built, and the size of the student body increased to more than one thousand.

    The curriculum drifted to a vocational emphasis, with less focus on theoretical science. The fledgling school still suffered from chronic financial shortages which diverted the attention of the MIT leadership. During these “Boston Tech” years, Massachusetts Institute of Technology faculty and alumni rebuffed Harvard University president (and former MIT faculty) Charles W. Eliot’s repeated attempts to merge MIT with Harvard College’s Lawrence Scientific School. There would be at least six attempts to absorb MIT into Harvard. In its cramped Back Bay location, MIT could not afford to expand its overcrowded facilities, driving a desperate search for a new campus and funding. Eventually, the MIT Corporation approved a formal agreement to merge with Harvard, over the vehement objections of MIT faculty, students, and alumni. However, a 1917 decision by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court effectively put an end to the merger scheme.

    In 1916, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology administration and the MIT charter crossed the Charles River on the ceremonial barge Bucentaur built for the occasion, to signify MIT’s move to a spacious new campus largely consisting of filled land on a one-mile-long (1.6 km) tract along the Cambridge side of the Charles River. The neoclassical “New Technology” campus was designed by William W. Bosworth and had been funded largely by anonymous donations from a mysterious “Mr. Smith”, starting in 1912. In January 1920, the donor was revealed to be the industrialist George Eastman of Rochester, New York, who had invented methods of film production and processing, and founded Eastman Kodak. Between 1912 and 1920, Eastman donated $20 million ($236.6 million in 2015 dollars) in cash and Kodak stock to MIT.

    Curricular reforms

    In the 1930s, President Karl Taylor Compton and Vice-President (effectively Provost) Vannevar Bush emphasized the importance of pure sciences like physics and chemistry and reduced the vocational practice required in shops and drafting studios. The Compton reforms “renewed confidence in the ability of the Institute to develop leadership in science as well as in engineering”. Unlike Ivy League schools, Massachusetts Institute of Technology catered more to middle-class families, and depended more on tuition than on endowments or grants for its funding. The school was elected to the Association of American Universities in 1934.

    Still, as late as 1949, the Lewis Committee lamented in its report on the state of education at The Massachusetts Institute of Technology that “the Institute is widely conceived as basically a vocational school”, a “partly unjustified” perception the committee sought to change. The report comprehensively reviewed the undergraduate curriculum, recommended offering a broader education, and warned against letting engineering and government-sponsored research detract from the sciences and humanities. The School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences and the MIT Sloan School of Management were formed in 1950 to compete with the powerful Schools of Science and Engineering. Previously marginalized faculties in the areas of economics, management, political science, and linguistics emerged into cohesive and assertive departments by attracting respected professors and launching competitive graduate programs. The School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences continued to develop under the successive terms of the more humanistically oriented presidents Howard W. Johnson and Jerome Wiesner between 1966 and 1980.

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology‘s involvement in military science surged during World War II. In 1941, Vannevar Bush was appointed head of the federal Office of Scientific Research and Development and directed funding to only a select group of universities, including MIT. Engineers and scientists from across the country gathered at Massachusetts Institute of Technology ‘s Radiation Laboratory, established in 1940 to assist the British military in developing microwave radar. The work done there significantly affected both the war and subsequent research in the area. Other defense projects included gyroscope-based and other complex control systems for gunsight, bombsight, and inertial navigation under Charles Stark Draper’s Instrumentation Laboratory; the development of a digital computer for flight simulations under Project Whirlwind; and high-speed and high-altitude photography under Harold Edgerton. By the end of the war, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology became the nation’s largest wartime R&D contractor (attracting some criticism of Bush), employing nearly 4000 in the Radiation Laboratory alone and receiving in excess of $100 million ($1.2 billion in 2015 dollars) before 1946. Work on defense projects continued even after then. Post-war government-sponsored research at MIT included SAGE and guidance systems for ballistic missiles and Project Apollo.

    These activities affected The Massachusetts Institute of Technology profoundly. A 1949 report noted the lack of “any great slackening in the pace of life at the Institute” to match the return to peacetime, remembering the “academic tranquility of the prewar years”, though acknowledging the significant contributions of military research to the increased emphasis on graduate education and rapid growth of personnel and facilities. The faculty doubled and the graduate student body quintupled during the terms of Karl Taylor Compton, president of The Massachusetts Institute of Technology between 1930 and 1948; James Rhyne Killian, president from 1948 to 1957; and Julius Adams Stratton, chancellor from 1952 to 1957, whose institution-building strategies shaped the expanding university. By the 1950s, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology no longer simply benefited the industries with which it had worked for three decades, and it had developed closer working relationships with new patrons, philanthropic foundations and the federal government.

    In late 1960s and early 1970s, student and faculty activists protested against the Vietnam War and The Massachusetts Institute of Technology ‘s defense research. In this period Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s various departments were researching helicopters, smart bombs and counterinsurgency techniques for the war in Vietnam as well as guidance systems for nuclear missiles. The Union of Concerned Scientists was founded on March 4, 1969 during a meeting of faculty members and students seeking to shift the emphasis on military research toward environmental and social problems. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology ultimately divested itself from the Instrumentation Laboratory and moved all classified research off-campus to the MIT Lincoln Laboratory facility in 1973 in response to the protests. The student body, faculty, and administration remained comparatively unpolarized during what was a tumultuous time for many other universities. Johnson was seen to be highly successful in leading his institution to “greater strength and unity” after these times of turmoil. However six Massachusetts Institute of Technology students were sentenced to prison terms at this time and some former student leaders, such as Michael Albert and George Katsiaficas, are still indignant about MIT’s role in military research and its suppression of these protests. (Richard Leacock’s film, November Actions, records some of these tumultuous events.)

    In the 1980s, there was more controversy at The Massachusetts Institute of Technology over its involvement in SDI (space weaponry) and CBW (chemical and biological warfare) research. More recently, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s research for the military has included work on robots, drones and ‘battle suits’.

    Recent history

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has kept pace with and helped to advance the digital age. In addition to developing the predecessors to modern computing and networking technologies, students, staff, and faculty members at Project MAC, the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, and the Tech Model Railroad Club wrote some of the earliest interactive computer video games like Spacewar! and created much of modern hacker slang and culture. Several major computer-related organizations have originated at MIT since the 1980s: Richard Stallman’s GNU Project and the subsequent Free Software Foundation were founded in the mid-1980s at the AI Lab; the MIT Media Lab was founded in 1985 by Nicholas Negroponte and Jerome Wiesner to promote research into novel uses of computer technology; the World Wide Web Consortium standards organization was founded at the Laboratory for Computer Science in 1994 by Tim Berners-Lee; the MIT OpenCourseWare project has made course materials for over 2,000 Massachusetts Institute of Technology classes available online free of charge since 2002; and the One Laptop per Child initiative to expand computer education and connectivity to children worldwide was launched in 2005.

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology was named a sea-grant college in 1976 to support its programs in oceanography and marine sciences and was named a space-grant college in 1989 to support its aeronautics and astronautics programs. Despite diminishing government financial support over the past quarter century, MIT launched several successful development campaigns to significantly expand the campus: new dormitories and athletics buildings on west campus; the Tang Center for Management Education; several buildings in the northeast corner of campus supporting research into biology, brain and cognitive sciences, genomics, biotechnology, and cancer research; and a number of new “backlot” buildings on Vassar Street including the Stata Center. Construction on campus in the 2000s included expansions of the Media Lab, the Sloan School’s eastern campus, and graduate residences in the northwest. In 2006, President Hockfield launched the MIT Energy Research Council to investigate the interdisciplinary challenges posed by increasing global energy consumption.

    In 2001, inspired by the open source and open access movements, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology launched OpenCourseWare to make the lecture notes, problem sets, syllabi, exams, and lectures from the great majority of its courses available online for no charge, though without any formal accreditation for coursework completed. While the cost of supporting and hosting the project is high, OCW expanded in 2005 to include other universities as a part of the OpenCourseWare Consortium, which currently includes more than 250 academic institutions with content available in at least six languages. In 2011, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology announced it would offer formal certification (but not credits or degrees) to online participants completing coursework in its “MITx” program, for a modest fee. The “edX” online platform supporting MITx was initially developed in partnership with Harvard and its analogous “Harvardx” initiative. The courseware platform is open source, and other universities have already joined and added their own course content. In March 2009 the Massachusetts Institute of Technology faculty adopted an open-access policy to make its scholarship publicly accessible online.

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has its own police force. Three days after the Boston Marathon bombing of April 2013, MIT Police patrol officer Sean Collier was fatally shot by the suspects Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, setting off a violent manhunt that shut down the campus and much of the Boston metropolitan area for a day. One week later, Collier’s memorial service was attended by more than 10,000 people, in a ceremony hosted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology community with thousands of police officers from the New England region and Canada. On November 25, 2013, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology announced the creation of the Collier Medal, to be awarded annually to “an individual or group that embodies the character and qualities that Officer Collier exhibited as a member of The Massachusetts Institute of Technology community and in all aspects of his life”. The announcement further stated that “Future recipients of the award will include those whose contributions exceed the boundaries of their profession, those who have contributed to building bridges across the community, and those who consistently and selflessly perform acts of kindness”.

    In September 2017, the school announced the creation of an artificial intelligence research lab called the MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab. IBM will spend $240 million over the next decade, and the lab will be staffed by MIT and IBM scientists. In October 2018 MIT announced that it would open a new Schwarzman College of Computing dedicated to the study of artificial intelligence, named after lead donor and The Blackstone Group CEO Stephen Schwarzman. The focus of the new college is to study not just AI, but interdisciplinary AI education, and how AI can be used in fields as diverse as history and biology. The cost of buildings and new faculty for the new college is expected to be $1 billion upon completion.

    The Caltech/MIT Advanced aLIGO was designed and constructed by a team of scientists from California Institute of Technology , Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and industrial contractors, and funded by the National Science Foundation .

    Caltech /MIT Advanced aLigo

    It was designed to open the field of gravitational-wave astronomy through the detection of gravitational waves predicted by general relativity. Gravitational waves were detected for the first time by the LIGO detector in 2015. For contributions to the LIGO detector and the observation of gravitational waves, two Caltech physicists, Kip Thorne and Barry Barish, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology physicist Rainer Weiss won the Nobel Prize in physics in 2017. Weiss, who is also a Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduate, designed the laser interferometric technique, which served as the essential blueprint for the LIGO.

    The mission of The Massachusetts Institute of Technology is to advance knowledge and educate students in science, technology, and other areas of scholarship that will best serve the nation and the world in the twenty-first century. We seek to develop in each member of The Massachusetts Institute of Technology community the ability and passion to work wisely, creatively, and effectively for the betterment of humankind.

     
  • richardmitnick 8:51 pm on March 15, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Gravitational Wave Mirror Experiments Can Evolve Into Quantum Entities", , Quantum Physics,   

    From The AIP-American Institute of Physics: “Gravitational Wave Mirror Experiments Can Evolve Into Quantum Entities” 

    From The AIP-American Institute of Physics

    March 15, 2022
    AVS Quantum Science

    Science paper: AVS Quantum Science

    AVS Quantum Science
    Macroscopic quantum mechanics in gravitational-wave observatories and beyond
    Credit: Roman Schnabel and Mikhail Korobko

    Quantum physical experiments exploring the motion of macroscopic or heavy bodies under gravitational forces require protection from any environmental noise and highly efficient sensing.

    An ideal system is a highly reflecting mirror whose motion is sensed by monochromatic light, which is photoelectrically detected with high quantum efficiency. A quantum optomechanical experiment is achieved if the quantum uncertainties of light and mirror motion influence each other, ultimately leading to the observation of entanglement between optical and motional degrees of freedom.

    1
    Schematic of a laser interferometer used to observe gravitational waves. If the quantum uncertainty of the radiation pressure of the light is the dominant dynamic force acting on the mirrors, a common quantum object arises from the mirror and the reflected light beam. In this case, the sensitivity of the interferometer is optimal when measuring changes in mirror positions due to gravitational waves. CREDIT: Alexander Franzen.

    In AVS Quantum Science [link to article is above], co-published by AIP Publishing and AVS, researchers from The University of Hamburg [Universität Hamburg](DE) review research on gravitational wave detectors as a historical example of quantum technologies and examine the fundamental research on the connection between quantum physics and gravity. Gravitational wave astronomy requires unprecedented sensitivities for measuring the tiny space-time oscillations at audio-band frequencies and below.

    The team examined recent gravitational wave experiments, showing it is possible to shield large objects, such as a 40-kilogram quartz glass mirror reflecting 200 kilowatts of laser light, from strong influences from the thermal and seismic environment to allow them to evolve as one quantum object.

    “The mirror perceives only the light, and the light only the mirror. The environment is basically not there for the two of them,” said author Roman Schnabel. “Their joint evolution is described by the Schrödinger equation.”

    This decoupling from the environment, which is central to all quantum technologies, including the quantum computer, enables measurement sensitivities that would otherwise be impossible.

    The researchers review intersects with Nobel laureate Roger Penrose’s work on exploring the quantum behavior of massive objects. Penrose sought to better understand the connection between quantum physics and gravity, which remains an open question.

    Penrose thought of an experiment in which light would be coupled to a mechanical device via radiation pressure. In their review, the researchers show while these very fundamental questions in physics remain unresolved, the highly shielded coupling of massive devices that reflect laser light is beginning to improve sensor technology.

    Going forward, researchers will likely explore further decoupling gravitational wave detectors from influences of the environment.

    More broadly speaking, the decoupling of quantum devices from any thermal energy exchange with the environment is key. It is required for quantum measurement devices as well as quantum computers.

    See the full article here.

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    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    The The AIP-American Institute of Physics promotes science and the profession of physics, publishes physics journals, and produces publications for scientific and engineering societies. The AIP is made up of various member societies. Its corporate headquarters are at the American Center for Physics in College Park, Maryland, but the institute also has offices in Melville, New York, and Beijing.

    The focus of the AIP appears to be organized around a set of core activities. The first delineated activity is to support member societies regarding essential society functions. This is accomplished by annually convening the various society officers to discuss common areas of concern. A range of topics is discussed which includes scientific publishing, public policy issues, membership-base issues, philanthropic giving, science education, science careers for a diverse population, and a forum for sharing ideas.

    Another core activity is publishing the science of physics in research journals, magazines, and conference proceedings. Member societies continue nevertheless to publish their own journals.

    Other core activities are tracking employment and education trends with six decades of coverage, being a liaison between research science and industry, historical collections and physics outreach programs, and supporting science education initiatives and supporting undergraduate physics. One other core activity is as an advocate for science policy to the U.S. Congress and the general public.

    Member societies:
    Acoustical Society of America
    American Association of Physicists in Medicine
    American Association of Physics Teachers
    American Astronomical Society
    American Crystallographic Association
    American Meteorological Society
    American Physical Society
    American Vacuum Society

    Affiliated societies

    American Association for the Advancement of Science, Section on Physics
    American Chemical Society, Division of Physical Chemistry
    American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
    American Nuclear Society
    American Society of Civil Engineers
    ASM International
    Astronomical Society of the Pacific
    Biomedical Engineering Society
    Council on Undergraduate Research, Physics & Astronomy Division
    Electrochemical Society
    Geological Society of America
    IEEE Nuclear and Plasma Sciences Society
    International Association of Mathematical Physics
    International Union of Crystallography
    International Centre for Diffraction Data
    Health Physics Society

     
  • richardmitnick 9:19 pm on January 25, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "A new language for quantum computing", , Discarding one qubit without being mindful of its entanglement with another qubit can destroy the data stored in the other jeopardizing the correctness of the program., , Quantum Physics, Qubits: When two qubits are entangled actions on one qubit can change the value of the other even when they are physically separated - Albert Einstein’s “spooky action at a distance”., Scientists from MIT’s CSAIL aimed to do some unraveling by creating their own programming language for quantum computing called Twist., , Time crystals. Microwaves. Diamonds. What do these three disparate things have in common? Quantum computing., Twist can describe and verify which pieces of data are entangled in a quantum program through a language a classical programmer can understand.   

    From The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US): “A new language for quantum computing” 

    MIT News

    From The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US)

    January 24, 2022
    Rachel Gordon,MIT CSAIL-Computer Science & Artificial Intelligence Lab(US)

    1
    While the nascent field of quantum computing can feel flashy and futuristic, quantum computers have the potential for computational breakthroughs in classically unsolvable tasks, like cryptographic and communication protocols, search, and computational physics and chemistry. Photo: Graham Carlow/IBM Corp.

    Time crystals. Microwaves. Diamonds. What do these three disparate things have in common?

    Quantum computing. Unlike traditional computers that use bits, quantum computers use qubits to encode information as zeros or ones, or both at the same time. Coupled with a cocktail of forces from quantum physics, these refrigerator-sized machines can process a whole lot of information — but they’re far from flawless. Just like our regular computers, we need to have the right programming languages to properly compute on quantum computers.

    Programming quantum computers requires awareness of something called “entanglement,” a computational multiplier for qubits of sorts, which translates to a lot of power. When two qubits are entangled actions on one qubit can change the value of the other even when they are physically separated, giving rise to Einstein’s characterization of “spooky action at a distance.” But that potency is equal parts a source of weakness. When programming, discarding one qubit without being mindful of its entanglement with another qubit can destroy the data stored in the other jeopardizing the correctness of the program.

    Scientists from MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence (CSAIL) aimed to do some unraveling by creating their own programming language for quantum computing called Twist. Twist can describe and verify which pieces of data are entangled in a quantum program through a language a classical programmer can understand. The language uses a concept called purity, which enforces the absence of entanglement and results in more intuitive programs, with ideally fewer bugs. For example, a programmer can use Twist to say that the temporary data generated as garbage by a program is not entangled with the program’s answer, making it safe to throw away.

    While the nascent field can feel a little flashy and futuristic, with images of mammoth wiry gold machines coming to mind, quantum computers have potential for computational breakthroughs in classically unsolvable tasks, like cryptographic and communication protocols, search, and computational physics and chemistry. One of the key challenges in computational sciences is dealing with the complexity of the problem and the amount of computation needed. Whereas a classical digital computer would need a very large exponential number of bits to be able to process such a simulation, a quantum computer could do it, potentially, using a very small number of qubits — if the right programs are there.

    “Our language Twist allows a developer to write safer quantum programs by explicitly stating when a qubit must not be entangled with another,” says Charles Yuan, an MIT PhD student in electrical engineering and computer science and the lead author on a new paper [POPL 2022] about Twist. “Because understanding quantum programs requires understanding entanglement, we hope that Twist paves the way to languages that make the unique challenges of quantum computing more accessible to programmers.”

    Yuan wrote the paper alongside Chris McNally, a PhD student in electrical engineering and computer science who is affiliated with the MIT Research Laboratory of Electronics, as well as MIT Assistant Professor Michael Carbin. They presented the research at last week’s 2022 Symposium on Principles of Programming conference in Philadelphia.

    Untangling quantum entanglement

    Imagine a wooden box that has a thousand cables protruding out from one side. You can pull any cable all the way out of the box, or push it all the way in.

    After you do this for a while, the cables form a pattern of bits — zeros and ones — depending on whether they’re in or out. This box represents the memory of a classical computer. A program for this computer is a sequence of instructions for when and how to pull on the cables.

    Now imagine a second, identical-looking box. This time, you tug on a cable, and see that as it emerges, a couple of other cables are pulled back inside. Clearly, inside the box, these cables are somehow entangled with each other.

    The second box is an analogy for a quantum computer, and understanding the meaning of a quantum program requires understanding the entanglement present in its data. But detecting entanglement is not straightforward. You can’t see into the wooden box, so the best you can do is try pulling on cables and carefully reason about which are entangled. In the same way, quantum programmers today have to reason about entanglement by hand. This is where the design of Twist helps massage some of those interlaced pieces.

    The scientists designed Twist to be expressive enough to write out programs for well-known quantum algorithms and identify bugs in their implementations. To evaluate Twist’s design, they modified the programs to introduce some kind of bug that would be relatively subtle for a human programmer to detect, and showed that Twist could automatically identify the bugs and reject the programs.

    They also measured how well the programs performed in practice in terms of runtime, which had less than 4 percent overhead over existing quantum programming techniques.

    For those wary of quantum’s “seedy” reputation in its potential to break encryption systems, Yuan says it’s still not very well known to what extent quantum computers will actually be able to reach their performance promises in practice. “There’s a lot of research that’s going on in post-quantum cryptography, which exists because even quantum computing is not all-powerful. So far, there’s a very specific set of applications in which people have developed algorithms and techniques where a quantum computer can outperform classical computers.”

    An important next step is using Twist to create higher-level quantum programming languages. Most quantum programming languages today still resemble assembly language, stringing together low-level operations, without mindfulness towards things like data types and functions, and what’s typical in classical software engineering.

    “Quantum computers are error-prone and difficult to program. By introducing and reasoning about the ‘purity’ of program code, Twist takes a big step towards making quantum programming easier by guaranteeing that the quantum bits in a pure piece of code cannot be altered by bits not in that code,” says Fred Chong, the Seymour Goodman Professor of Computer Science at the University of Chicago and chief scientist at Super.tech.

    The work was supported, in part, by the MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab, the National Science Foundation, and the Office of Naval Research.

    See the full article here .


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    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.

    Stem Education Coalition

    MIT Seal

    USPS “Forever” postage stamps celebrating Innovation at MIT.

    MIT Campus

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) is a private land-grant research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The institute has an urban campus that extends more than a mile (1.6 km) alongside the Charles River. The institute also encompasses a number of major off-campus facilities such as the MIT Lincoln Laboratory (US), the MIT Bates Research and Engineering Center (US), and the Haystack Observatory (US), as well as affiliated laboratories such as the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard(US) and Whitehead Institute (US).

    Massachusettes Institute of Technology-Haystack Observatory(US) Westford, Massachusetts, USA, Altitude 131 m (430 ft).

    Founded in 1861 in response to the increasing industrialization of the United States, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) adopted a European polytechnic university model and stressed laboratory instruction in applied science and engineering. It has since played a key role in the development of many aspects of modern science, engineering, mathematics, and technology, and is widely known for its innovation and academic strength. It is frequently regarded as one of the most prestigious universities in the world.

    As of December 2020, 97 Nobel laureates, 26 Turing Award winners, and 8 Fields Medalists have been affiliated with MIT as alumni, faculty members, or researchers. In addition, 58 National Medal of Science recipients, 29 National Medals of Technology and Innovation recipients, 50 MacArthur Fellows, 80 Marshall Scholars, 3 Mitchell Scholars, 22 Schwarzman Scholars, 41 astronauts, and 16 Chief Scientists of the U.S. Air Force have been affiliated with The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) . The university also has a strong entrepreneurial culture and MIT alumni have founded or co-founded many notable companies. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) is a member of the Association of American Universities (AAU).

    Foundation and vision

    In 1859, a proposal was submitted to the Massachusetts General Court to use newly filled lands in Back Bay, Boston for a “Conservatory of Art and Science”, but the proposal failed. A charter for the incorporation of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, proposed by William Barton Rogers, was signed by John Albion Andrew, the governor of Massachusetts, on April 10, 1861.

    Rogers, a professor from the University of Virginia (US), wanted to establish an institution to address rapid scientific and technological advances. He did not wish to found a professional school, but a combination with elements of both professional and liberal education, proposing that:

    “The true and only practicable object of a polytechnic school is, as I conceive, the teaching, not of the minute details and manipulations of the arts, which can be done only in the workshop, but the inculcation of those scientific principles which form the basis and explanation of them, and along with this, a full and methodical review of all their leading processes and operations in connection with physical laws.”

    The Rogers Plan reflected the German research university model, emphasizing an independent faculty engaged in research, as well as instruction oriented around seminars and laboratories.

    Early developments

    Two days after Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) was chartered, the first battle of the Civil War broke out. After a long delay through the war years, MIT’s first classes were held in the Mercantile Building in Boston in 1865. The new institute was founded as part of the Morrill Land-Grant Colleges Act to fund institutions “to promote the liberal and practical education of the industrial classes” and was a land-grant school. In 1863 under the same act, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts founded the Massachusetts Agricultural College, which developed as the University of Massachusetts Amherst (US)). In 1866, the proceeds from land sales went toward new buildings in the Back Bay.

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) was informally called “Boston Tech”. The institute adopted the European polytechnic university model and emphasized laboratory instruction from an early date. Despite chronic financial problems, the institute saw growth in the last two decades of the 19th century under President Francis Amasa Walker. Programs in electrical, chemical, marine, and sanitary engineering were introduced, new buildings were built, and the size of the student body increased to more than one thousand.

    The curriculum drifted to a vocational emphasis, with less focus on theoretical science. The fledgling school still suffered from chronic financial shortages which diverted the attention of the MIT leadership. During these “Boston Tech” years, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) faculty and alumni rebuffed Harvard University (US) president (and former MIT faculty) Charles W. Eliot’s repeated attempts to merge MIT with Harvard College’s Lawrence Scientific School. There would be at least six attempts to absorb MIT into Harvard. In its cramped Back Bay location, MIT could not afford to expand its overcrowded facilities, driving a desperate search for a new campus and funding. Eventually, the MIT Corporation approved a formal agreement to merge with Harvard, over the vehement objections of MIT faculty, students, and alumni. However, a 1917 decision by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court effectively put an end to the merger scheme.

    In 1916, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) administration and the MIT charter crossed the Charles River on the ceremonial barge Bucentaur built for the occasion, to signify MIT’s move to a spacious new campus largely consisting of filled land on a one-mile-long (1.6 km) tract along the Cambridge side of the Charles River. The neoclassical “New Technology” campus was designed by William W. Bosworth and had been funded largely by anonymous donations from a mysterious “Mr. Smith”, starting in 1912. In January 1920, the donor was revealed to be the industrialist George Eastman of Rochester, New York, who had invented methods of film production and processing, and founded Eastman Kodak. Between 1912 and 1920, Eastman donated $20 million ($236.6 million in 2015 dollars) in cash and Kodak stock to MIT.

    Curricular reforms

    In the 1930s, President Karl Taylor Compton and Vice-President (effectively Provost) Vannevar Bush emphasized the importance of pure sciences like physics and chemistry and reduced the vocational practice required in shops and drafting studios. The Compton reforms “renewed confidence in the ability of the Institute to develop leadership in science as well as in engineering”. Unlike Ivy League schools, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) catered more to middle-class families, and depended more on tuition than on endowments or grants for its funding. The school was elected to the Association of American Universities (US)in 1934.

    Still, as late as 1949, the Lewis Committee lamented in its report on the state of education at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) that “the Institute is widely conceived as basically a vocational school”, a “partly unjustified” perception the committee sought to change. The report comprehensively reviewed the undergraduate curriculum, recommended offering a broader education, and warned against letting engineering and government-sponsored research detract from the sciences and humanities. The School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences and the MIT Sloan School of Management were formed in 1950 to compete with the powerful Schools of Science and Engineering. Previously marginalized faculties in the areas of economics, management, political science, and linguistics emerged into cohesive and assertive departments by attracting respected professors and launching competitive graduate programs. The School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences continued to develop under the successive terms of the more humanistically oriented presidents Howard W. Johnson and Jerome Wiesner between 1966 and 1980.

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US)‘s involvement in military science surged during World War II. In 1941, Vannevar Bush was appointed head of the federal Office of Scientific Research and Development and directed funding to only a select group of universities, including MIT. Engineers and scientists from across the country gathered at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US)’s Radiation Laboratory, established in 1940 to assist the British military in developing microwave radar. The work done there significantly affected both the war and subsequent research in the area. Other defense projects included gyroscope-based and other complex control systems for gunsight, bombsight, and inertial navigation under Charles Stark Draper’s Instrumentation Laboratory; the development of a digital computer for flight simulations under Project Whirlwind; and high-speed and high-altitude photography under Harold Edgerton. By the end of the war, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) became the nation’s largest wartime R&D contractor (attracting some criticism of Bush), employing nearly 4000 in the Radiation Laboratory alone and receiving in excess of $100 million ($1.2 billion in 2015 dollars) before 1946. Work on defense projects continued even after then. Post-war government-sponsored research at MIT included SAGE and guidance systems for ballistic missiles and Project Apollo.

    These activities affected Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) profoundly. A 1949 report noted the lack of “any great slackening in the pace of life at the Institute” to match the return to peacetime, remembering the “academic tranquility of the prewar years”, though acknowledging the significant contributions of military research to the increased emphasis on graduate education and rapid growth of personnel and facilities. The faculty doubled and the graduate student body quintupled during the terms of Karl Taylor Compton, president of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) between 1930 and 1948; James Rhyne Killian, president from 1948 to 1957; and Julius Adams Stratton, chancellor from 1952 to 1957, whose institution-building strategies shaped the expanding university. By the 1950s, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) no longer simply benefited the industries with which it had worked for three decades, and it had developed closer working relationships with new patrons, philanthropic foundations and the federal government.

    In late 1960s and early 1970s, student and faculty activists protested against the Vietnam War and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US)’s defense research. In this period Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US)’s various departments were researching helicopters, smart bombs and counterinsurgency techniques for the war in Vietnam as well as guidance systems for nuclear missiles. The Union of Concerned Scientists was founded on March 4, 1969 during a meeting of faculty members and students seeking to shift the emphasis on military research toward environmental and social problems. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) ultimately divested itself from the Instrumentation Laboratory and moved all classified research off-campus to the MIT (US) Lincoln Laboratory facility in 1973 in response to the protests. The student body, faculty, and administration remained comparatively unpolarized during what was a tumultuous time for many other universities. Johnson was seen to be highly successful in leading his institution to “greater strength and unity” after these times of turmoil. However six Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) students were sentenced to prison terms at this time and some former student leaders, such as Michael Albert and George Katsiaficas, are still indignant about MIT’s role in military research and its suppression of these protests. (Richard Leacock’s film, November Actions, records some of these tumultuous events.)

    In the 1980s, there was more controversy at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) over its involvement in SDI (space weaponry) and CBW (chemical and biological warfare) research. More recently, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US)’s research for the military has included work on robots, drones and ‘battle suits’.

    Recent history

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) has kept pace with and helped to advance the digital age. In addition to developing the predecessors to modern computing and networking technologies, students, staff, and faculty members at Project MAC, the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, and the Tech Model Railroad Club wrote some of the earliest interactive computer video games like Spacewar! and created much of modern hacker slang and culture. Several major computer-related organizations have originated at MIT since the 1980s: Richard Stallman’s GNU Project and the subsequent Free Software Foundation were founded in the mid-1980s at the AI Lab; the MIT Media Lab was founded in 1985 by Nicholas Negroponte and Jerome Wiesner to promote research into novel uses of computer technology; the World Wide Web Consortium standards organization was founded at the Laboratory for Computer Science in 1994 by Tim Berners-Lee; the MIT OpenCourseWare project has made course materials for over 2,000 Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) classes available online free of charge since 2002; and the One Laptop per Child initiative to expand computer education and connectivity to children worldwide was launched in 2005.

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) was named a sea-grant college in 1976 to support its programs in oceanography and marine sciences and was named a space-grant college in 1989 to support its aeronautics and astronautics programs. Despite diminishing government financial support over the past quarter century, MIT launched several successful development campaigns to significantly expand the campus: new dormitories and athletics buildings on west campus; the Tang Center for Management Education; several buildings in the northeast corner of campus supporting research into biology, brain and cognitive sciences, genomics, biotechnology, and cancer research; and a number of new “backlot” buildings on Vassar Street including the Stata Center. Construction on campus in the 2000s included expansions of the Media Lab, the Sloan School’s eastern campus, and graduate residences in the northwest. In 2006, President Hockfield launched the MIT Energy Research Council to investigate the interdisciplinary challenges posed by increasing global energy consumption.

    In 2001, inspired by the open source and open access movements, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) launched OpenCourseWare to make the lecture notes, problem sets, syllabi, exams, and lectures from the great majority of its courses available online for no charge, though without any formal accreditation for coursework completed. While the cost of supporting and hosting the project is high, OCW expanded in 2005 to include other universities as a part of the OpenCourseWare Consortium, which currently includes more than 250 academic institutions with content available in at least six languages. In 2011, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) announced it would offer formal certification (but not credits or degrees) to online participants completing coursework in its “MITx” program, for a modest fee. The “edX” online platform supporting MITx was initially developed in partnership with Harvard and its analogous “Harvardx” initiative. The courseware platform is open source, and other universities have already joined and added their own course content. In March 2009 the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) faculty adopted an open-access policy to make its scholarship publicly accessible online.

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) has its own police force. Three days after the Boston Marathon bombing of April 2013, MIT Police patrol officer Sean Collier was fatally shot by the suspects Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, setting off a violent manhunt that shut down the campus and much of the Boston metropolitan area for a day. One week later, Collier’s memorial service was attended by more than 10,000 people, in a ceremony hosted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) community with thousands of police officers from the New England region and Canada. On November 25, 2013, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) announced the creation of the Collier Medal, to be awarded annually to “an individual or group that embodies the character and qualities that Officer Collier exhibited as a member of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) community and in all aspects of his life”. The announcement further stated that “Future recipients of the award will include those whose contributions exceed the boundaries of their profession, those who have contributed to building bridges across the community, and those who consistently and selflessly perform acts of kindness”.

    In September 2017, the school announced the creation of an artificial intelligence research lab called the MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab. IBM will spend $240 million over the next decade, and the lab will be staffed by MIT and IBM scientists. In October 2018 MIT announced that it would open a new Schwarzman College of Computing dedicated to the study of artificial intelligence, named after lead donor and The Blackstone Group CEO Stephen Schwarzman. The focus of the new college is to study not just AI, but interdisciplinary AI education, and how AI can be used in fields as diverse as history and biology. The cost of buildings and new faculty for the new college is expected to be $1 billion upon completion.

    The Caltech/MIT Advanced aLIGO (US) was designed and constructed by a team of scientists from California Institute of Technology (US), Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US), and industrial contractors, and funded by the National Science Foundation (US) .

    Caltech /MIT Advanced aLigo

    It was designed to open the field of gravitational-wave astronomy through the detection of gravitational waves predicted by general relativity. Gravitational waves were detected for the first time by the LIGO detector in 2015. For contributions to the LIGO detector and the observation of gravitational waves, two Caltech physicists, Kip Thorne and Barry Barish, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) physicist Rainer Weiss won the Nobel Prize in physics in 2017. Weiss, who is also an Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) graduate, designed the laser interferometric technique, which served as the essential blueprint for the LIGO.

    The mission of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US) is to advance knowledge and educate students in science, technology, and other areas of scholarship that will best serve the nation and the world in the twenty-first century. We seek to develop in each member of The Massachusetts Institute of Technology community the ability and passion to work wisely, creatively, and effectively for the betterment of humankind.

     
  • richardmitnick 2:55 pm on January 15, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: "Playing by the quantum rules", , , , , Quantum Physics, Spooky action: on the quantum scale the universe doesn’t work the way you might expect.,   

    From Symmetry : “Playing by the quantum rules” 

    Symmetry Mag
    From Symmetry

    01/11/22
    Nathan Collins

    1
    Illustration by Sandbox Studio, Chicago with Ana Kova.

    Uncertainty, entanglement, spooky action: On the quantum scale the universe doesn’t work the way you might expect.

    While driving down the highway, physicist Werner Heisenberg is stopped by a police officer, the physics joke begins.

    “Do you know how fast you were going?” the officer demands.

    When Heisenberg shakes his head, the officer tells him: “You were doing 90.”

    “Great,” Heisenberg complains. “Now I don’t know where I am.”

    To get the joke, you need to be familiar with the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, Heisenberg’s observation that it’s impossible to simultaneously measure both the velocity and position of certain objects.

    It’s a joke because, of course, the uncertainty principle does not apply to something the size of a person or a car.

    The uncertainty principle comes from quantum physics, which deals with much smaller objects—things like atoms and quarks. The quantum world differs from the classical world we’re used to in a variety of ways.

    Being in two places at once

    In the classical world, a satellite is either traveling at 6,753 miles per hour, or it isn’t. Similarly, a rock is either sitting at 37°25’12.7”N, 122°12’16.5”W, or it isn’t. In both cases, in the classical world, there’s no ambiguity.

    A quantum mechanical satellite or rock would be different: It could be in many places, traveling at many speeds, all at the same time.

    Physicists refer to this as an object being in a superposition of states. At any given moment, a quantum system can be in a superposition of states with different positions, speeds, energies or whatever other property one can imagine.

    Only observing the object, taking a measure of it at a specific point in time, would collapse this superposition of possibilities. If an observer measured the position or speed of our quantum rock, they would get a definite answer.

    There’s a caveat, however: Because of the quantum uncertainty principle, the observer cannot perfectly determine both the position and the speed of the quantum rock at the same time. The more precisely the observer measures position, the less precisely they can measure speed, and vice versa.

    The truly weird part: However precisely one measures the quantum rock’s position or speed, quantum physics does not determine what that position or speed will be, only the probability that the rock will be in one place or another or have one speed or another.

    Entanglement and spooky action at a distance

    Unfortunately, there is no simple way to map the fact of quantum superposition and its consequences onto our intuitions. It is something one must simply accept about quantum physics.

    If you think that sounds difficult, you’re not alone. A number of highly regarded physicists tried to find a way around this befuddling feature.

    To illustrate their frustrations, Albert Einstein, Boris Podolsky and Nathan Rosen came up with a thought experiment they hoped would show something was missing from quantum theory. They were ultimately proved wrong, but the example helps explain another key idea, called quantum entanglement.

    First, here’s the thought experiment: Start with a particle that decays into a particle-antiparticle pair. In their example, the physicists chose a neutral pion decaying into an electron and a positron.

    Each of these particles has a fundamental property called spin, so named because it obeys some of the same rules as spinning objects in classical physics. Spin is conserved, so the total spin of the particle-antiparticle pair needs to add up to the spin of their parent particle.

    The neutral pion from the example has 0 spin, while electrons and positrons can have one of two possibilities: either spin +1/2 or -1/2. Since their spins must add up to 0, the electron-positron pair either could be in a state where the electron has spin +1/2 and the positron has spin -1/2, or the other way around. Physics does not determine which state the system is in, and in fact it will be in a superposition of the two states until a measurement is made.

    To physicists, the electron and positron are entangled. We don’t know the electron’s spin state, but we know that whatever it is, it’s the opposite of the positron’s spin state.

    Einstein, Podolsky and Rosen—EPR for short—noticed that this state of things, entanglement, implied what came to be known popularly as “spooky action at a distance.”

    In their thought experiment, the next step would be to separate the electron and positron by a great distance and then measure the electron’s spin. At that instant, the electron would no longer be in a superposition of states—its spin would be either +1/2 or -1/2.

    Say they measure the electron’s spin to be +1/2. Because the electron and positron are entangled, the positron’s spin instantly, in that moment, must become -1/2. Crucially, this happens before the positron could receive any signal from the electron—even if the signal traveled at the speed of light, the fastest possible speed in the universe.

    The thought experiment—which eventually was confirmed experimentally using larger and larger distances between the two entangled particles—seems to imply that, for entanglement to work, the electron must send a faster-than-light signal to the positron about what state it should be in. This is impossible, since the transmission of this signal would violate the rules of causality that govern all of physics.

    EPR regarded their thought experiment as proof that quantum mechanics was missing something, and they and others argued that there must be some so-called hidden variables that predetermined what states the electron and positron were actually in. The rules of quantum theory were correct, the argument went, but those rules were incomplete until these hidden variables could be discovered.

    But in 1964, physicist John Bell showed that quantum mechanics did not allow for any such hidden variables. Hidden variables would, in fact, violate the rules of quantum mechanics.

    Subsequent experiments have proven Bell correct. As counterintuitive as they are, entanglement and spooky action at a distance are real.

    Pixel by pixel

    There’s one more feature to mention: the one that gives the field its “quantum” name.

    In the classical world, most everything is continuous. You can stand anywhere between point A and point B. You can travel at any speed, up to the speed of light. And, with some constraints, orbits around a planet can have any radius.

    That’s sometimes true in the quantum world, but not often. In general, the quantum world is discrete, or quantized.

    One of the first signs that the quantum world might be discrete arrived in the late 19th century when physicists noticed that atoms emitted only certain specific wavelengths, or colors, of light. Hydrogen, for instance, emits only four visible wavelengths: 410, 434, 486 and 656 nanometers. These discrete wavelengths, physicists worked out, were the result of electrons orbiting the hydrogen nucleus hopping between different, discrete energy levels.

    Quantum physics is filled with examples of discrete systems, including one you already know about: spin. If one measures the spin of an electron or a positron, the answer is always either +1/2 or -1/2, never anything in between. Something similar holds for atoms and other particles.

    All of this is just the beginning. Superposition, the uncertainty principle, entanglement and quantized properties such as spin are some of the most important features of quantum physics. But scientists already knew about all of them by the 1930s. In the decades that followed, physicists developed quantum electrodynamics, a quantum theory of electromagnetic fields, as well as a completely quantum view of nearly all elementary particles and their interactions, today known as the Standard Model.

    And even now questions remain. There is still no adequate quantum theory of gravity, something that physicists will need to develop to understand black holes and the origins of our universe, when all matter was compressed in an extraordinarily tiny volume. The solution to those puzzles may lie in the idea that space itself is quantized or pixelated in some way, or in links between spacetime geometry, the standard way of describing gravity, and quantum physics. Right now, no one can say for sure.

    For physicists and others alike, it’s not easy to get a grasp on quantum physics. But understanding that the quantum world works differently from the world that we know is the beginning of understanding our universe at its most fundamental level.

    See the full article here .


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    Please help promote STEM in your local schools.


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    Symmetry is a joint Fermilab/SLAC publication.


     
  • richardmitnick 10:38 am on January 12, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , At the dawn of the 20th century a new theory of matter and energy was emerging., , Could a quantum worldview prove useful outside the lab?, Information Theory: a blend of math and computer science, , One of the main questions quantum mechanics addressed was the nature of light-particle or wave, , Peter Shor: a fast-factoring algorithm for a quantum computer-a computer whose bits exist in superposition and can be entangled., Physicists developed a new system of mechanics to describe what seemed to be a quantized and uncertain probabilistic world-Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle, , , , , Quantum Physics, , Shor’s algorithm is of particular interest in encryption because of the difficulty of identifying the prime factors of large numbers., Shor’s algorithm was designed to quickly divide large numbers into their prime factors., The second quantum revolution also relies on and encompasses new ways of using technology to manipulate matter at the quantum level., Today’s quantum computers are not yet advanced enough to implement Shor’s algorithm., , Vacuum tubes, What changed was Shor’s introduction of error-correcting codes.   

    From Symmetry: “The second quantum revolution” 

    Symmetry Mag

    From Symmetry

    01/12/22
    Daniel Garisto

    1
    Illustration by Ana Kova / Sandbox Studio, Chicago.

    Inventions like the transistor and laser changed the world. What changes will the second quantum revolution bring?

    For physicists trying to harness the power of electricity, no tool was more important than the vacuum tube. This lightbulb-like device controlled the flow of electricity and could amplify signals. In the early 20th century, vacuum tubes were used in radios, televisions and long-distance telephone networks.

    But vacuum tubes had significant drawbacks: They generated heat; they were bulky; and they had a propensity to burn out. Physicists at Bell Labs, a spin-off of AT&T, were interested in finding a replacement.

    Applying their knowledge of quantum mechanics—specifically how electrons flowed between materials with electrical conductivity—they found a way to mimic the function of vacuum tubes without those shortcomings.

    They had invented the transistor. At the time, the invention did not grace the front page of any major news publications. Even the scientists themselves couldn’t have appreciated just how important their device would be.

    First came the transistor radio, popularized in large part by the new Japanese company Sony. Spreading portable access to radio broadcasts changed music and connected disparate corners of the world.

    Transistors then paved the way for NASA’s Apollo Project, which first took humans to the moon. And perhaps most importantly, transistors were made smaller and smaller, shrinking room-sized computers and magnifying their power to eventually create laptops and smartphones.

    These quantum-inspired devices are central to every single modern electronic application that uses some computing power, such as cars, cellphones and digital cameras. You would not be reading this sentence without transistors, which are an important part of what is now called the First Quantum Revolution.

    Quantum physicists Jonathan Dowling and Gerard Milburn coined the term “quantum revolution” in a 2002 paper [The Royal Society]. In it, they argue that we have now entered a new era, a Second Quantum Revolution. “It just dawned on me that actually there was a whole new technological frontier opening up,” says Milburn, professor emeritus at The University of Queensland (AU).

    This second quantum revolution is defined by developments in technologies like quantum computing and quantum sensing, brought on by a deeper understanding of the quantum world and precision control down to the level of individual particles.

    A quantum understanding

    At the dawn of the 20th century a new theory of matter and energy was emerging. Unsatisfied with classical explanations about the strange behavior of particles, physicists developed a new system of mechanics to describe what seemed to be a quantized, uncertain, probabilistic world.

    One of the main questions quantum mechanics addressed was the nature of light. Eighteenth-century physicists believed light was a particle. Nineteenth-century physicists proved it had to be a wave. Twentieth-century physicists resolved the problem by redefining particles using the principles of quantum mechanics. They proposed that particles of light, now called photons, had some probability of existing in a given location—a probability that could be represented as a wave and even experience interference like one.

    This newfound picture of the world helped make sense of results such as those of the double-slit experiment, which showed that particles like electrons and photons could behave as if they were waves.

    But could a quantum worldview prove useful outside the lab?

    At first, “quantum was usually seen as just a source of mystery and confusion and all sorts of strange paradoxes,” Milburn says.

    But after World War II, people began figuring out how to use those paradoxes to get things done. Building on new quantum ideas about the behavior of electrons in metals and other materials, Bell Labs researchers William Shockley, John Bardeen and Walter Brattain created the first transistors. They realized that sandwiching semiconductors together could create a device that would allow electrical current to flow in one direction, but not another. Other technologies, such as atomic clocks and the nuclear magnetic resonance used for MRI scans, were also products of the first quantum revolution.

    Another important and, well, visible quantum invention was the laser.

    In the 1950s, optical physicists knew that hitting certain kinds of atoms with a few photons at the right energy could lead them to emit more photons with the same energy and direction as the initial photons. This effect would cause a cascade of photons, creating a stable, straight beam of light unlike anything seen in nature. Today, lasers are ubiquitous, used in applications from laser pointers to barcode scanners to life-saving medical techniques.

    All of these devices were made possible by studies of the quantum world. Both the laser and transistor rely on an understanding of quantized atomic energy levels. Milburn and Dowling suggest that the technologies of the first quantum revolution are unified by “the idea that matter particles sometimes behaved like waves, and that light waves sometimes acted like particles.”

    For the first time, scientists were using their understanding of quantum mechanics to create new tools that could be used in the classical world.

    The second quantum revolution

    Many of these developments were described to the public without resorting to the word “quantum,” as this Bell Labs video about the laser attests.

    One reason for the disconnect was that the first quantum revolution didn’t make full use of quantum mechanics. “The systems were too noisy. In a sense, the full richness of quantum mechanics wasn’t really accessible,” says Ivan Deutsch, a quantum physicist at The University of New Mexico (US). “You can get by with a fairly classical picture.”

    The stage for the second quantum revolution was set in the 1960s, when the North Irish physicist John Stewart Bell [B.Sc.The Queen’s University of Belfast (NIR); Ph.DThe University of Birmingham (UK);The European Organization for Nuclear Research [Organisation européenne pour la recherche nucléaire] [Europäische Organisation für Kernforschung](CH) [CERN]; Stanford University (US) ] shook the foundations of quantum mechanics. Bell proposed that entangled particles were correlated in strange quantum ways and could not be explained with so-called “hidden variables.” Tests performed in the ’70s and ’80s confirmed that measuring one entangled particle really did seem to determine the state of the other, faster than any signal could travel between the two.

    The other critical ingredient for the second quantum revolution was information theory, a blend of math and computer science developed by pioneers like Claude Shannon and Alan Turing. In 1994, combining new insight into the foundations of quantum mechanics with information theory led the mathematician Peter Shor to introduce a fast-factoring algorithm for a quantum computer, a computer whose bits exist in superposition and can be entangled.

    Shor’s algorithm was designed to quickly divide large numbers into their prime factors. Using the algorithm, a quantum computer could solve the problem much more efficiently than a classical one. It was the clearest early demonstration of the worth of quantum computing.

    “It really made the whole idea of quantum information, a new concept that those of us who had been working in related areas, instantly appreciated,” Deutsch says. “Shor’s algorithm suggested the possibilities new quantum tech could have over existing classical tech, galvanizing research across the board.”

    Shor’s algorithm is of particular interest in encryption because the difficulty of identifying the prime factors of large numbers is precisely what keeps data private online. To unlock encrypted information, a computer must know the prime factors of a large number associated with it. Use a large enough number, and the puzzle of guessing its prime factors can take a classical computer thousands of years. With Shor’s algorithm, the guessing game can take just moments.

    Today’s quantum computers are not yet advanced enough to implement Shor’s algorithm. But as Deutsch points out, skeptics once doubted a quantum computer was even possible.

    “Because there was a kind of trade-off,” he says. “The kind of exponential increase in computational power that might come from quantum superpositions would be counteracted exactly, by exponential sensitivity to noise.”

    While inventions like the transistor required knowledge of quantum mechanics, the device itself wasn’t in a delicate quantum state, so it could be described semi-classically. Quantum computers, on the other hand, require delicate quantum connections.

    What changed was Shor’s introduction of error-correcting codes. By combining concepts from classical information theory with quantum mechanics, Shor showed that, in theory, even the delicate state of a quantum computer could be preserved.

    Beyond quantum computing, the second quantum revolution also relies on and encompasses new ways of using technology to manipulate matter at the quantum level.

    Using lasers, researchers have learned to sap the energy of atoms and cool them. Like a soccer player dribbling a ball up field with a series of taps, lasers can cool atoms to billionths of a degree above absolute zero—far colder than conventional cooling techniques. In 1995, scientists used laser cooling to observe a long-predicted state of matter: the Bose-Einstein condensate.

    Other quantum optical techniques have been developed to make ultra-precise measurements.

    Classical interferometers, like the type used in the famous Michelson-Morley experiment that measured the speed of light in different directions to search for signs of a hypothetical aether, looked at the interference pattern of light. New matter-wave interferometers exploit the principle that everything—not just light—has a wavefunction. Measuring changes in the phase of atoms, which have far shorter wavelengths than light, could give unprecedented control to experiments that attempt to measure the smallest effects, like those of gravity.

    With laboratories and companies around the world focused on advancements in quantum science and applications, the second quantum revolution has only begun. As Bardeen put it in his Nobel lecture, we may be at another “particularly opportune time … to add another small step in the control of nature for the benefit of [hu]mankind.”

    See the full article here .


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    Symmetry is a joint Fermilab/SLAC publication.


     
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