The Kavli Foundation Spotlight Live: Hey Einstein, It Really Is a Quantum World

05 November 2015

Society & Partner News

05 November, 2015 in Societies & Partner News

Ronald Hanson and Renato Renner discuss the strongest proof to date that quantum theory explains the true nature of the universe.

WHAT KIND OF UNIVERSE DO WE LIVE IN? Dutch physicist Ronald Hanson has given us the best answer to that question to date. And Albert Einstein wouldn’t like it.

The question revolves around a phenomenon called quantum entanglement, which predicts that changing one particle instantaneously changes the other – even if they are on opposite sides of the galaxy, 100,000 light-years apart.

Einstein called this idea “spooky action at a distance.” And he dismissed it, arguing that nothing could move faster than light, so entanglement couldn’t be real. Instead, he proposed that unknown “local factors” must determine the strange properties of these so-called entangled particles.

So how did Hanson prove him wrong? He conducted an experiment that builds on the work of a physicist named John Bell. In the 1960s, Bell argued that Einstein’s theory could be tested by separating a pair of entangled particles far enough so that local forces could not act on both of them at the same time and by seeing how often their properties correlated. Physicists would also have to take enough measurements to prove their results were statistically valid.
On Thursday, 5 November at 1 pm EST (10:00 am PST), The Kavli Foundation will host a Google+ Hangout to discuss our surprising quantum universe, and how we can turn theory into practical engineering. 

Submit questions ahead of and during the webcast by emailing info@kavlifoundation.orgor by using the hashtag #KavliLive on Twitter.  

WHEN: Thursday (Nov. 5) at 1:00 – 1:30 pm EST 
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Ask questions using the hashtag #KavliLive.