I Would Teleport 88.9 Miles, and I Would Teleport 88.9 Miles More

And now you are all going to have The Proclaimers in your head. You’re welcome, my galleons.

So, it’s been a while since we checked in on the world of quantum teleportation, and I suppose we should rectify that. Mostly because there’s some interesting news on that front.

A little over 2 years ago, we did a post on here about a team of Tokyo scientists who successfully teleported a photon 10 mi (16 km) using quantum entanglement. It was the longest distance quantum teleportation at the time and kind of a big deal.

But move aside, Tokyo. Scientists at the University of Waterloo have teleported their little photons a whopping 88.9 mi (143 km). Not only is this noteworthy because of the shattering of previous distance records, but because 143 km is roughly the minimum distance between the ground and orbiting satellites. Considering a major goal of quantum teleportation research is to adapt it for use in ground-to-satellite communication (both for its speed and impenetrability), this latest experiment is kind of a big deal.

The Waterloo crew teleported their photons between La Palma and Tenerife, two of the Canary Islands. They created a new coincidence algorithm (which, let’s be honest, just sounds cool) and ultra-precise clocks and photon detectors for the experiment, equipment necessary to overcome atmospheric conditions caused by dust whipped up from the Sahara Desert, which actually ruined their first attempt at the experiment back in 2011. As a bonus, however, the equipment created to combat the desert dust will be necessary for ground-to-space communication. So hey, that’s useful.

In fact, that’s exactly what the team says the next logical experiment in the quantum teleportation saga is- teleportation between Earth and a satellite.

Oh, sure, robots and photons can go to space, but not me. What kind of bullshit is this, science?

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