10/20/05 - physics and crystals

In today's excerpt - the phenomenon where one crystal of beta-barium borate, if split from another, will vibrate at the exact same intant and direction as its twin, no matter how far apart it is separated:

"The crystals produce special particles of light that, no matter how far apart they ever travel, will always have an eerie connection to one another across the vastest reaches of time and space. If a scientist makes a measurement on one particle, the other will 'feel' it instantaneously.

"Einstein called this 'spooky action at a distance', and the very idea gave him fits. But in the 70 years since the great man insisted that spooky action had to be wrong, and dreamed up thought experiments to disprove it, evidence for it has only gotten stronger ...

"Spooky action is more properly called entanglement ... the crystals split some of the light particles, or photons into two infrared daughter particles ... you [then] measure [one of] the daughters directly. ... This is where the magic enters. The other daughter, which like its sibling, has been a mix of wiggles, settles into the exact same motion at the exact same time, even a measuring device [was never close to it].

"This is what gave Einstein fits ... he really hated the idea that measuring one particle affects an entangled particle, even one clear across the universe."


Sharon Begley


'Even Scientists Marvel At 'Spooky' Behavior of Separated Objects'


Wall Street Journal


October 14, 2005


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