Items tagged with "many-body physics"
Quantum physics is a notorious rule-breaker. For example, it makes the classical laws of thermodynamics, which describe how heat and energy move around, look more like guidelines than ironclad natural laws.
In some experiments, a quantum object can keep its cool despite sitting next to something hot that is steadily releasing energy. It’s similar to reaching into the oven for a hot pan without a mitt and having your hand remain comfortably cool.
The quantum world blatantly defies intuitions that we’ve developed while living among relatively large things, like cars, pennies and dust motes. In the quantum world, tiny particles can maintain a special connection over any distance, pass through barriers and simultaneously travel down multiple paths.
A less widely known quantum behavior is dynamical localization, a phenomenon in which a quantum object stays at the same temperature despite a steady supply of energy—bucking the assumption that a cold object will always steal heat from a warmer object.
Exotic physics can happen when quantum particles come together and talk to each other. Understanding such processes is challenging for scientists, because the particle interactions can be hard to glimpse and even harder to control. Moreover, modern computer simulations struggle to make sense of all the intricate dynamics going on in a large group of particles. Luckily, atoms cooled to near zero temperatures can provide insight into this problem.
Machine learning, the field that’s driving a revolution in artificial intelligence, has cemented its role in modern technology. Its tools and techniques have led to rapid improvements in everything from self-driving cars and speech recognition to the digital mastery of an ancient board game.