Quantum Information: Making Two From One


Quantum physics analyzes a quantum system (QS) that has the ability to exist in a superposition of different states, simultaneously. Lately, scientists have developed computers, which are based on quantum mechanical principles, instead of classical physics.

Scientists and physicists from the Max Planck Institute created a photon pair from the energy of an electron via light source. The first photon will be used for quantum information transmission, whereas the other will be observed, as it exhibits the precise state of its twin, at any time. This phenomenon is known as entanglement.


Quantum Communication at a Higher Level

Entanglement is one of the most significant phenomena of quantum mechanics. Suppose that two particles exist and placed into a state where there is a strong correlation (i.e., entanglement).


Determining one particle affects the state of the other. This correlation exists, even if there is a great space between them. Now, the vital part is the ability for researchers to gather data about the state of one by calculating the state of the second. When another particle comes into play, interrelating with the second of the entangled two, the change is replicated on the former as well. This generates a mirror-effect of the twin, basically causing teleportation.


Quantum particles shift their states the moment they are detected. So, it is very hard to have a clear view of the data that is transmitted by a photon. The answer is the pair of photons which gives us the ability to use the first photon as a messenger of its twin.


Information Inside the Quantum World

In future, researchers think that quantum computers will be the key to secure information technology. One example that shows proof of the significance of quantum security is when a quantum form of cryptography was studied, and the results showed that it is unbreakable, even for quantum systems.


The finding, by the researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Solid State Research, was a unique source that created the pairs of photons. This source, is known as a scanning tunneling microscope (STM).

The image shows us that when an electron (the wave) hits a barrier, the wave doesn’t abruptly end, but tapers off very quickly – exponentially. This is a quantum mechanical effect that occurs when electrons move through a barrier due to their wave-like properties. Tunneling depends on the thickness of the barrier; the wave does not get past a thick barrier. (Source: Public Domain)

Earlier study has used this microscope to study the surfaces of conducting or semiconducting substances. The device is based on an effect known as quantum tunneling. Theories in quantum mechanics state that electrons have both wave and particle-like properties. Tunneling is an effect of this wavelike nature, a quantum mechanical effect.


1. Scanning Tunneling Microscopy, 2018. [Online] Available at: https://www.nanoscience.com/techniques/scanning-tunneling-microscopy/


2. Max Planck Society, 2019: Quantum communication: making two from one. [Online] Available at: https://phys.org/news/2019-05-quantum.html


3. Calvin F. Quate, 2019. Scanning tunneling microscope. [Online] Available at: https://www.britannica.com/technology/scanning-tunneling-microscope


4. Chad Orzel, 2018. How Do You Create Quantum Entanglement? [Online] Available at: https://www.forbes.com/sites/chadorzel/2017/02/28/how-do-you-create-quantum-entanglement/#10b0bd861732

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