No, it won’t let you beam straight from your house to work, but it’s still really cool.
PolicyMic reports that scientists from the Netherlands have been able to successfully perform quantum teleportation, whereby two objects in remote locations can affect each other as though they were directly attached. Its a feat which Albert Einstein himself once dismissed as “spooky action at a distance.”
In a new paper published in the journal Science, physicists at the Kavli Institute of Nanoscience at the Delft University of Technology said they were able to “reliably teleport information between two quantum bits separated by three meters, or about 10 feet.” This goes against Einstein’s notion of particle entanglement, and is a huge breakthrough for quantum mechanical theory – and information transmission as we know it.
The experiment in question sent quantum data on an electron’s spin state to another electron about 10 feet away, with the information being sent as though the two electron’s were directly connected. The scientists are hoping to increase the distance from 10 feet to a kilometer for their next attempt.
And before some of you write this off as a “boring” use of science, a few things to keep in mind: one, this science powers the “quantum entanglement” communication technology employed by Mass Effect’s Normandy, and two a perfected version of this tech would allow for the almost instantaneous transmission of data across almost any length of distance. It would outrace even some of the fastest internet providers today, like Google Fiber.
PolicyMic also notes that a closed quantum network would make it much harder for an outside party to determine what content is being accessed.
And, of course, there’s also the excitement of proving wrong one of the greatest scientific minds that ever lived.
“There is a big race going on between five or six groups to prove Einstein wrong,” said Ronald Hanson, one of the lead researchers. “There is one very big fish.”