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How to build a quantum Newton’s cradle

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a classical Newton's cradle

a classical Newton’s cradle

A quantum analogue of the popular “Newton’s cradle” toy has been proposed by a duo of physicists in Italy. Like momentum transferred in the toy, the team argues that it should be possible to achieve the nearly perfect transmission of a quantum wavefunction along a line of ultracold atoms in a 1D Bose–Einstein condensate. According to the pair, the work could help develop quantum-information systems that achieve high-quality wave transmission.

Best described as an “executive desk toy”, a Newton’s cradle is a device that demonstrates the conservation of energy and momentum. It consists of small, identically sized metal balls suspended from two horizontal bars. When a ball is lifted and allowed to fall, it strikes its immediate neighbour and comes to a stop. But its momentum is transferred across the rest of the spheres and propels only the sphere at the opposite end of the line into the air. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by physicsgg

May 3, 2014 at 10:40 am

Posted in QUANTUM PHYSICS

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