Quantum Physics


Molecules in Action

Authors: George Rajna

Quantum mechanics rules. It dictates how particles and forces interact, and thus how atoms and molecules work—for example, what happens when a molecule goes from a higher-energy state to a lower-energy one. But beyond the simplest molecules, the details become very complex. [29] In an article published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences scientists from the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter in Hamburg show, however, that under certain conditions, photons can strongly influence chemistry. [28] University of Otago physicists have found a way to control individual atoms, making them appear wherever they want them to. [27] New research shows that a scanning-tunneling microscope (STM), used to study changes in the shape of a single molecule at the atomic scale, impacts the ability of that molecule to make these changes. [26] Physicists are getting a little bit closer to answering one of the oldest and most basic questions of quantum theory: does the quantum state represent reality or just our knowledge of reality? [25] A team of researchers led by LMU physics professor Immanuel Bloch has experimentally realized an exotic quantum system which is robust to mixing by periodic forces. [24] A group of scientists led by Johannes Fink from the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) reported the first experimental observation of a first-order phase transition in a dissipative quantum system. [23] ORNL researchers have discovered a new type of quantum critical point, a new way in which materials change from one state of matter to another. [22] New research conducted at the University of Chicago has confirmed a decades-old theory describing the dynamics of continuous phase transitions. [21] No matter whether it is acoustic waves, quantum matter waves or optical waves of a laser—all kinds of waves can be in different states of oscillation, corresponding to different frequencies. Calculating these frequencies is part of the tools of the trade in theoretical physics. Recently, however, a special class of systems has caught the attention of the scientific community, forcing physicists to abandon well-established rules. [20]

Comments: 44 Pages.

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[v1] 2017-04-04 11:49:07

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