03 February 2009

Time for teleporting? Not quite!

It seems we are closer to having access to teleporters, according to this New York Times article.

Right now, it only works on a single atom, so don't spend too much time thinking of how exciting it will be to teleport a la Star Trek to the next genealogy conference or that it will revolutionize roots travel with instantaneous visits back to your family's shtetl.

Joint Quantum Institute (Maryland) scientists were successful in teleporting the quantum identity of one atom to another a few feet away.

The process needs some more work as it fails nearly all the time, succeeding in only one of each 100 million attempts, and takes 10 minutes to transfer a single bit of information. Said University of Maryland physicist Christopher Monroe, who authored a paper describing the research, "We need to work on that."

While it may not be a practical mode of transportation for the forseeable future, scientists say it could form an important component in new types of communication and computing.

If you are a science sort, you'll understand more than I did in the story about the process which mentions ytterbium ions, microwave pulses, photons and such.

Every great journey starts with a single step!

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