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Quantum Teleportation

The Evil Genius

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Ok - since this is a big deal to some of you - let me just go out and say that no I don't think this is causing global warming. :D

Now, onto the article...

Scientists Report 'Teleported' Data

Mon Jun 17, 4:33 PM ET

By PETER O'CONNOR, Associated Press Writer

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) - Australian scientists said Monday they had successfully "teleported" a laser beam encoded with data, breaking it up and reconstructing an exact replica a yard away.

Their work replicates an experiment at the California Institute of Technology in 1998, but the Australian team believes their technique is more reliable and consistent.

Although the research brings to mind the way "Star Trek" characters were beamed around on TV and in film, scientists at the Australian National University said their technique's main use will be as a way to encrypt information and for a new generation of super-fast computers.

At this stage, the process perfected by Australian physicist Ping Koy Lam and his 12-member team can only teleport light by destroying the light beam and creating an exact copy at the receiving end from light particles known as photons.

"We have taken a beam of laser light ... and completely destroyed it and then made measurements of the destroyed laser beam and then took the measured results to the other side of the lab and reconstructed an exact replica of what we have destroyed," said Lam.

Teleporting a laser beam involves destroying and replicating billions of photons.

Lam said he believes the process, called "quantum teleportation" and which takes a nanosecond — one billionth of one second — will soon be used for teleporting matter.

"My prediction is if we are not doing it, it will probably be done by someone in the next three to five years, that is the teleportation of a single atom or a small group of atoms," he said.

Teleporting a living person would likely be virtually impossible, scientists said.

"In theory, there is nothing stopping, us but the complexity of the problem is so huge no one is thinking seriously about it at the moment," Lam said.

Quantum teleportation makes use of a strange aspect of quantum physics called the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, which says it is impossible to measure both the speed and position of an object at the same time.

The researchers couldn't directly measure the key characteristics of the laser beam they wanted to replicate, so they turned to a process called entanglement. In entanglement, characteristics of tiny particles — like the photons that make up laser beams — can be mirrored in a second set of particles.

So researchers can make their measurements on a second laser beam that was entangled with the first. The measurements are then sent by radio waves to the receiving station, which exactly replicates the first beam that was destroyed in the process of entanglement.

Lam's team will be presenting the results to an international conference on quantum electronics in Moscow next week.

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I don't know why, but I can't help but think of that part in Galaxyquest when I read about halfway down the article. Yeeeuck. Heady stuff. Laser Beam encoded With Data. Sigh. Anyone remember drums and data cards? :silly:

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Well, even though the teleportation of humans is "science fiction" to these people...

I wonder how fast this technology will advance.

I mean, who thought discovering planets and other solar systems was science fiction? And that was only 12 years ago that it was thought of that way.

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Yeah, when I started I used:

COBOL on an IBM 360/40. You had to turn a set of punch cards in to an operator.

Assembler on an HP1000. It was a 16 bit processor with 64K of directly addressable memory. We had to load the boot up program through the front panel via 16 odd toggle switches.

Disk drives bigger than washing machines.

Paper teletype terminals.

It sure has come a long way in the intervening years.

Now it's almost 'beam me aboard, Scotty!'

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That doesn't sound like teleportation as much as it sounds like a fancy fax machine.

I can't imagine teleporting a human. Perhaps a few hundered years from now I'll sound like those folks who said man couldn't fly and the world was flat. I'm a pretty open-minded fellow, but this just doesn't seem possible to me.

You can't build an exact replica in another place and say you've teleported a person. There are aspects about us humans that are not tangible. Memory for example. Education. Feelings. How can you teleport those? And how can say it's an EXACT replica without them? You can't.

One interesting novel that touches on this is Michael Crichton's "Timeline." A group of people are sent through both space and time (to 14th-century feudal France). Quite interesting and informative, as are all of his books.

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You can't build an exact replica in another place and say you've teleported a person. There are aspects about us humans that are not tangible. Memory for example. Education. Feelings. How can you teleport those? And how can say it's an EXACT replica without them? You can't.

But if all that stuff is basically an arrangement of neurons, synapses, and ganglia, then an exact duplication should be able to retain eveything.

Feelings are generated from a combination of current input and memory, combined with an individual's physical biological makeup. Once the pattern has been restored down to the atomic level, and new input is coming in through the senses, then feelings should occur.

Memories are data storage, if you've faithfully duplicated everything down to the atominc level then again, memories should be there. Ditto for education.

Perhaps you are confusing teleportation with cloning.

My only worry is that you'd have a perfect yet dead copy of a human, heart not beating and no nerve impulses flowing, and you'd have to kick start it back to life with a shock or something similar.

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