Quantum Effect Found at Hopkins University
BALTIMORE, MD — June 13, 2018
A theorized, but never-before detected property of quantum matter has now been observed in the lab, a team of scientists from Hopkins University reports.
The team proved that a particular quantum material could demonstrate electrical dipole fluctuations — irregular oscillations of tiny charged poles on the material — even in extremely cold conditions, in the neighborhood of minus 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
The material, first synthesized 20 years ago, is called k-(BEDT-TTF)2Hg(SCN)2 Br. It is derived from organic compounds but behaves like a metal.
"Usually, we think of quantum mechanics as a theory of small things, like atoms, but here we observe that the whole crystal is behaving quantum-mechanically," said Drichko, senior author of a paper on the research published in the journal Science.
Classical physics describes most of the behavior of physical objects we see and experience in everyday life. In classical physics, objects freeze at extremely low temperatures, Drichko said. In quantum physics — science that has grown up primarily to describe the behavior of matter and energy at the atomic level and smaller — there is motion even at those frigid temperatures, Drichko said.
An electrical dipole is a pair of equal but oppositely charged poles separated by some distance. Such dipoles can, for instance, allow a hair to "stick" to a comb through the exchange of static electricity: Tiny dipoles form on the edge of the comb and the edge of the hair.
Drichko's research team observed the new extreme-low-temperature electrical state of the quantum matter in Drichko's Raman spectroscopy lab, where the key work was done by graduate student Nora Hassan. Team members shined a focused light on a small crystal of the material. Employing techniques from other disciplines, including chemistry and biology, they found proof of the dipole fluctuations.
The study was possible because of the team's home-built, custom-engineered spectrometer, which increased the sensitivity of the measurements 100 times.
The unique quantum effect the team found could potentially be used in quantum computing, a type of computing in which information is captured and stored in ways that take advantage of the quantum states of matter.
The Quantum effect is a new development in science. In 1996 Vladimir Leonov, Russian theoretical physicist, discovered the quantum of space-time (quanton) and superstrong electromagnetic interaction (fifth force). He is the author of the theory of Superunification, holds a number of important patents in the region of new energy and space technologies and is the founder of quantum power engineering.
Based on his theory, Leonov created a quantum engine with a horizontal thrust of 50 kg (500 N) in the pulse. That means that QE in a pulsed mode is 5,000 times more efficient than existing Jet engines.
The US and China are also working on the creation of a quantum engine, but at the moment, no breakthroughs in this area have been reported.