Teleporting Schrödinger’s Cat

We are tangled
We are stolen
We are living where things are hidden ~The Golden State John Doe

As you may remember, I’m a bit of a sucker for quantum entanglement. So imagine how geeked I was a few days ago when I read about a University of Tokyo experiment that managed to teleport packets of light via quantum entanglement.

Hint: I was really fucking geeked.

So, before we discuss the specifics of this particular piece of science awesome, let’s have a brief refresher on teleportation via entanglement (stolen and slightly amended from a previous post because I’m too lazy to write this up again):

Here’s how it works: Quantum teleportation requires three components. A and B are entangled particles. C is the particle to be teleported. So, C comes in contact with A. A then “scans” C, giving A the complete information about C. The information is then immediately transferred to B, who then becomes an exact replica of C. In the process, the original object (C) is destroyed.

So, back to our intrepid scientific team, led by Noriyuki Lee at the University of Tokyo. Lee and company linked packets of light to half of an entangled pair of particles. When the packet of light and particle A were destroyed, particle B (having been entangled with particle A) retained detailed information about that light packet- information that can be used to rebuild it.

To do this, they put the light into a state of superposition, just like Schrödinger’s crafty theoretical feline.

That’s right, kitteh.

The Tokyo Team (capitalization definitely required) put the light into superposition, making it have two opposite phases at the same time. What’s important about this is that it demonstrates (for the first time) that blocks of complex quantum information can be carried by light through entangled particles.

“If we can do this, we can do just about any form of communication needed for any quantum technology,” said Elanor Huntington, part of the research team.

This is a major breakthrough in quantum teleportation that could make it possible to transmit large volumes of complex quantum information quicker than ever before. It’s a path to the actualization of quantum supercomputers, the current holy grail of the tech world.

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