Light could exist in a previously unknown form

Discussion in 'Physics & Math' started by Plazma Inferno!, Aug 9, 2016.

  1. Plazma Inferno! Ding Ding Ding Ding Administrator

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    New research suggests that it is possible to create a new form of light by binding light to a single electron, combining the properties of both.
    According to the scientists behind the study, from Imperial College London, the coupled light and electron would have properties that could lead to circuits that work with packages of light – photons – instead of electrons.
    It would also allow researchers to study quantum physical phenomena, which govern particles smaller than atoms, on a visible scale.
    In normal materials, light interacts with a whole host of electrons present on the surface and within the material. But by using theoretical physics to model the behaviour of light and a recently-discovered class of materials known as topological insulators, Imperial researchers have found that it could interact with just one electron on the surface.
    This would create a coupling that merges some of the properties of the light and the electron. Normally, light travels in a straight line, but when bound to the electron it would instead follow its path, tracing the surface of the material.

    http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/newsandeventspggrp/imperialcollege/newssummary/news_4-8-2016-11-5-15

    Study: http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2016/160805/ncomms12375/full/ncomms12375.html
     
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