PerspectivePhysics

Make It Quantum and Continuous

Science  15 Apr 2011:
Vol. 332, Issue 6027, pp. 313-314
DOI: 10.1126/science.1204814

You are currently viewing the summary.

View Full Text

Summary

Quantum light looks like a mysterious thing: Is it wave, or particle, or both, or neither? Since the very beginning of quantum optics, physicists have been looking for graphical ways to represent the quantum state of light in order to understand it better. One can then visualize quite surprising quantum objects, such as the so-called Schrödinger's-cat state: In classical terms, it would be an oscillation having two opposite phases at the same time, like the famous cat being both living and dead. Such exotic quantum states can now be prepared in the lab, and even better, they can be teleported—that is, destroyed in one place and recreated in another one, as shown by Lee et al. (1) on page 330 of this issue.